Tomorrow my little boy, my baby gets to go into ‘big school’ and meet his junior infants teacher, he gets to meet all of his future classmates and have a look around what will be his new classroom.
We’ve been down this road before, we know what it entails. We know that while he is very excited by the idea of it, tomorrow might be a different story, there may be clinging, there will be uncertainty and I might even have to squeeze into one of those tiny chairs to make a jigsaw with him. We know all this but he doesn’t.
To him the idea of going to big school does not involve him finishing in his much adored Montesorri school.
To him the idea of meeting his teacher couldn’t possibly mean he has to say goodbye to his beloved Montesorri teacher.
Seeing his new classmates has nothing to do with saying goodbye to his old ones.
He knows none of this and yet we do. Telling him is pointless and will only lead to upset. It will dawn on him slowly and as with his big sisters he will come to accept it.
It is us who will struggle. Not with the idea of him growing up, parenting has taught me that each new phase brings its own joy and focusing on what’s to come is so much nicer than mourning what we are leaving behind.
It is not his preschool years that I will be mourning but having to say a last goodbye to the amazing people in his Montesorri.
This is the place where our shy daughter learned confidence, our stubborn daughter learned how to move forward from an entrenched position so firmly held, where our spirited non-conforming daughter learned that it’s perfectly fine to just be yourself and where our wild tornado of a son learned that you can be wild and free and yet still listen and follow direction.
There is so much that I have to be grateful for but most of all I’m grateful for having found it, for the fact that each of our children got to experience this wonderful start on their educational journey.
And so tomorrow our youngest will dip his toe into the world of ‘big school’ ,excitement levels are unrealistically high so there will no doubt be some disappointment but most of all tomorrow will serve as a small, quiet but insistent alarm bell that another last is coming, and other goodbye will have to be said.