August 23, 2012


Last week my oldest child started her freshman year of college.  Classes haven't actually started yet, but she is in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M, and they report 10 days early for orientation.  As of last night, her favorite things are marching and shining shoes.  I have a call in to the authorities to find my real daughter.

Today my youngest started kindergarten.

We left the house early so that we could walk the kids in on their first day of school.  Of course, Bang ditched us in the parking lot.  He's a high school freshman now and too cool to walk in with his parents.  We continued up the hill to the primary building, dropping The Princess off in her new fourth grade classroom and then heading to the kindergarten rooms.  Crash led the way, excited about the opportunity to socialize with people his own size.

We wound our way through the gaggle of weepy, picture taking parents, got Crash's lunch and backpack stowed away, found his assigned seat -where he was quickly engaged by the teacher's assistant (and the blue-eyed doll seated next to him), said our cheerful goodbyes and fought our way back through the crowd of parents into the hall.

We were handed a flyer and directed toward the 'coffee and tears' welcome event in the school commons.  The muffins looked good as we walked by, but I thought my excessive hooting and fist pumping, in celebration of the last of my kids starting school, might offend the other parents who were having severe separation anxiety, so we didn't stop.

Perhaps I am a bad parent, but I know that Crash is going to love kindergarten.  He is a social animal and I am exhausted after a summer of entertaining him.  I am not sad to be alone during the day, in fact, I have about 10 years worth of home and self improvement projects to delve into, as well as finding some work to help feed us as we begin the college tuition years.

I am probably better prepared, having just sent a kid off to college.  At least I still get to see Crash and the others each night and weekend.  I still get to care for them when they are sick, do their laundry, feed them, harangue them about homework.  No matter the impetus, I think of today as a celebration of new beginnings, not a tearful pity party because my baby started school.

Now, how much celebratory Kahlua can one have in their coffee and recover in time for afternoon car line?

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