Wednesday, June 29, 2005

She is the Sunshine of my life

Yesterday was my baby's last day of pre K summer school. The change in this child is amazing. When she first started, she was a bit uncertain, scared and embarrassed to admit it. She did not like the structured environment, did not like the 'rules' because she has spent 5 years being fiercely independent and marching to the beat of her own drum, living life on her terms, and taking things in her own stride.

But along with being independent and tough and strong, and a real go-getter, a part of her was still clinging tightly to her 'baby' status and would cuddle up next to me at night and watch tv, still call me Mommy, crawl into my bed after a bad dream. I could still see glimpses of the baby she used to be but they were getting harder and harder to find.

Yesterday, I had to drop her off alone, as her brother was at his father's house, and on her last day of school she had to walk in alone. My heart swelled with pride, and my eyes misted up as she reached up hugged me good bye "I love you Mommy" (still the baby) got out of the car and proudly, bravely walked into school alone, no longer the baby, but a very self assured 5 year old.

I know the days of cuddling, and my 'Mommy' days are numbered. I know that soon she will be 'too old' for such child-like language and displays of affection. I know that I will lose even more of my baby when the school year begins and she makes new friends and experiences new adventures. I know that the best way to love her is to be sure her feet are firmly planted on the ground and give her wings. I just want to hold and love my baby just a little bit longer.

For a child who was a surprise, she has become my greatest joy. She never fails to bring a smile to my face, turn a bad day around, warm my heart. She offers the simplest sweetest hugs and kisses when I need to be loved the most. She laughs with me, cries with me, and gets angry right along beside me, often turning my anger into laughter and smiles.

I am fiercely proud of her. While I hate to lose my baby, I am so excited and curious about the child/person/woman she will become.

Friday, June 3, 2005

Beat of her own music

Yesterday was my baby's first day of Pre-K summer school. I couldn't wait to find out about her first day when we got home.

So Megan, how was school?
"I hate it Mom. Do I have to go back?"

Great, this is not the vision I had for her in school. Better find out why she hated it so much.

"Because we have to sit at our desks all the time and do what the teacher says."

Therein lies the 'problem'. My free spirited Megan was bucking the system, rebelling against the rules and balking at routine. Megan has always marched to the beat of her own music doing things in her own time, in her own way, with her own sense of style. School, with it's rules, and limitations was just a bit too stifeling for her. While Megan's world marches on in 6/8 time, school wants her to dance in 4/4 time. All of which clashes desperately with Megan's internal metronome.

Megan has always had her own time. Her conception was a year earlier than her father and I had planned. Her development has never been 'by the book', some things she did early, some things late. Some days she insists on being the leader of the pack and taking charge of the activities for her older brother and sister. Some days she's content to sit back and allow them to lead.

Megan has never 'conformed'. She always thinks outside the box. Who says you can't have ice cream for dinner once in a while? Who says you can't wear stripes with plaids, they both have lines? Who says you can't eat mashed potatoes and gravy for breakfast? When asked 'Why?' she is likely to answer with 'Why not?'

So, while forces beyond my control dictate that I put her in public school, I pray they recognise the gift that she is. I pray that their rules and routines don't sufficate and squash her free spirit. I pray that she always maintains her own time, her own style, her individuality. I hope that they recognise that her anwers to their questions may not always be the answers they are looking for, but they are not wrong either.

Megan will never see things as Black and white, she will always see things is various shades of gray. I hope she never loses her own music of her life.

March on Megan, what ever tempo your heart desires.