The Last Day

This is it. The last day of pre-school. The last time Edward will take a bus to school, as we live across the street from the elementary school where he will begin Kindergarten in just 2 short months, 3 medium sized weeks, and one long day. Goodbye to the amazing program that has taught and nurtured him for the past 2 years. So long, free lunches and an almost 1:1 student-teacher ratio. Farewell, toddlerhood, babyhood, and the earliest days of your youth. You’re a real boy now. It’s not the beginning of the end, but the beginning has surely ended.

You’d think he would appreciate these things, but he is only five. I tried to elicit some sort of wistful response from him last night, but I got nothing. He won’t see his friends anymore, who he has been with for two years now, because they are mostly all going to different schools. None of them live on our end of town, or if they do they are not 5 yet and will not be joining the kindergarten exodus. Shouldn’t that make him a little sad?

I mean, it’s not that I want my son to be sad, but I do want him to appropriately experience and process the emotions that come with loss. And maybe that’s my problem. I look around and all I see is loss everywhere. I see time pass by and take things from me as it whizzes past my head, like a mosquito that I can’t quite catch, always just a blur in my peripheral vision as it darts in to take of some of my lifeblood. I think to myself, we will never have this again, or do that again, and it makes me nostalgic and sad. How can I be nostalgic for a time that technically hasn’t ended yet? I don’t know. Maybe I am really mourning the loss of my own childhood, and the ability to relive it through my children. Or maybe I’m just a sad and mopey son-of-a-biscuit who likes to complain about things.

Edward, on the other hand, is counting down the days to the next big adventure. He likes school, sure, but summer is coming! Who, except for some old guy in the house, the heck cares about the end of preschool?! It’s time for camps, and swimming, and ice cream, and vacations! He is insanely excited about Kindergarten, and gets a big goofy smile on his face any time we bring it up. Yesterday we walked over to the school to turn in his final immunization records, and you would have thought we were walking up to the factory to hand Mr. Wonka our golden ticket. Edward doesn’t see loss, he sees only gain. Boy, I wish I were 5 again.

So probably I should just relax, let him be happy and excited, and stop trying to force artificial gravitas onto his situation. It’s only preschool after all. It’s not like he’s moving out, or heading to college. He’s just wrapping up one adventure and moving on to the next. And if that isn’t the best way to look at life, I don’t know what is. Not sure where he learned that from. Not from me, obviously. Maybe from preschool. And now it’s over. And he’ll never learn anything from preschool again. Excuse me, I need to end this post. I think I have something in my eye.

Posted in Edward, Kindergarten, Parenting, Preschool.

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