As My Oldest Prepares for Kindergarten ...

I have waited all year for August. My oldest is finally five and will be starting kindergarten. I have been anticipating gaining some of my freedom back.

Then I went school shopping.

I literally had to stop myself from crying in Target. Once home, I bawled while writing her name on her supplies.

The whole summer, I was only thinking of how I couldn’t wait for a break. While I still have a two-year-old at home, it’s a lot easier to manage one child versus two (especially when my oldest is the most strong-willed, free-spirited child ever). I wished the months away, praying for fall.

I didn’t realize that the gorgeous pink bundle I brought home five years ago was no longer a baby. Gone are her infant and toddler days and a new era is upon is. A huge turning point in her life is here. Today she enters kindergarten; tomorrow she accepts her high school diploma.

I know I may sound somewhat melodramatic, but in the blink of an eye, my baby was five. In just a few more blinks, she’ll be taking on the world. 

As she prepares for kindergarten, I’m reevaluating my parenting. Am I cherishing the cuddles and small moments? Am I relaxing and letting her be a kid before she’s not one anymore? Am I teaching her life’s most important lessons of kindness and integrity?

I used to roll my eyes when people said time goes by faster the older you get. Now I’m crying and regretting taking the time for granted. I never thought it would happen to me. I never thought there would come a time when my children weren’t babies.

So, my dear daughter, cherish your life. Cherish your childhood and innocence. I have loved being your mom and watching you grow.

Motherhood has more chaotic days than not, but I’m done wishing them away. I’m done praying for the rush of things to come. I will now enjoy this crazy life and relish my children while they are little.

And I pray for the sanity of my daughter’s kindergarten teacher.