You know that Bon Jovi song that goes, “The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town?” I’m singing, “The kids are back in school, the kids are back in school.” While our summer was pretty easy (especially compared to the amount of dread I entered it with!), I love the beginning of the school year, starting new activities, meeting new teachers, and all the holidays in the fall.
Last week we had a quick meet-the-teacher event at school and I absolutely loved seeing all of my daughter’s friends after a summer away. They seemed much taller and more mature than they were in May. In fact, two years ago when we were at the kindergarten orientation, I remember looking at the 5th graders and wondering how these little people were ever going to be that big. Now I can kind of see it…
There were a couple of parents who were shocked to see how much Sweet Girl had grown over the summer. And I can see it too. Mr. B and I have talked about how she is braver and more confident. Beginning a new camp each Monday really helped her practice going into unknown situations.
And so, while I have said some of these things to her, I would like to share more completely here:
Dear Sweet Girl,
There were a myriad of tiny, almost unnoticeable, changes over the past 12 weeks that have culminated in a “new and improved” you. Each one was celebrated in its own way, but was really not that big of a deal. However, when you look at them all together, you are all-of-a-sudden much more mature and certainly more confident than you ever were before.
You can conjure an entire imaginary audience to watch and learn from your instructional art videos and bath time chemistry concoctions. I love that you could do this for hours at a time if we let you. Your creativity and imagination impresses me.
You went from fearing day 1 of a weekly camp, hanging on me, and a few tears… to a quick kiss goodbye. You have tried and embraced so many new things this summer that I know you won’t be afraid to keep trying more. Card tricks, the scientific method, dance and music games, working with clay, learning about rainforests… the things you know amaze me, especially when they emerge at times when I can learn something from you.
We went to a few baseball games this summer, and now you are determined to play softball. We practice swinging and hitting, catching and throwing, and you have gotten considerably good at it. I am so happy that you aren’t afraid to be terrible at something while you learn to strengthen your skills. I am impressed with your self-motivation and determination too.
We have had lots of house projects going on and you asked if you could redo your room as well. It went from a pink little girl’s room (dolls, stuffed animals) to a big girls room (chapter books, shelves, loft bed). You had set ideas of exactly what you wanted and we made it happen. Even more impressive, you tossed or donated so many of your toys and clothes, being willing to part with things for the first time. THAT was huge for you!
You are taller, stronger, more confident, and wiser than you were 12 weeks ago. I know you will continue to change quickly. It has caused me to pay much more attention than I have been lately. I want to enjoy your being 7, wanting to cuddle, talking to me about all your ideas. I am so so glad that I am here to listen, to kiss you goodbye in the morning and pick you up at school, to give you a snack and hear all about your day, to see what you are liking to watch on tv and read about, and to tuck you in every night. I would not give that up for anything.
Here’s to another milestone year at school. xoxo, Mommy