I have learned that there are a ton of germs swirling around the school (shocker!) If there was anything we could get we did get. Flu-check twice survived the puking-off-the-top-bunk in the middle of the night episode. Colds-check more than I could count one even won us a trip to the x-ray room to see if it had developed into pneumonia. Pink eye-check. Two cases, Well one, but in each eye so I am counting that as two because it was just as gross in each peeper. The only thing we didn't get a chance to enjoy was lice. Not that we didn't get an opportunity to have it's presence around us we just didn't personally have it as an unwelcome guest in our home. Super thankful for that as I was a wee bit paranoid (read totally obsessed with any preventative measure I could get my hands on) Tea-tree shampoo, tea tree oil (applied generously to the scalp, coats & back packs on a semi-regular basis) coats thrust into the dryer on the highest heat possible immediately after entering the house after school. And the creme de la creme of paranoia was the spray my dear friend gave me called "Lice knowing you" Love that stuff smells good & makes me feel like a real lice warrior. This would liberally spray hoods, coats, & backpacks on a regular basis. And no I didn't read the ingredients don't even want to know. Point is I think it works. So I have a pretty good system down & am guessing it will need to be repeated for only the next 11 years or so. Then the kid is on his own.
I learned that my sometimes shy kiddo doesn't need me around to facilitate conversation. He was constantly coming home to tell me that he played with so & so or he talked to so & so about this & that. These were kiddos not even in the same class! How in the world did the kid who used to & sometimes still does hide behind my legs & turn a shade of pink when spoken to how did that kid become mister social at recess time?! How I wish I could have been a fly on the err... soccer ball or monkey bars for those initial introductions. " Hi." "Hi." "Wanna play super-hero ninja warriors?" "You're it!" Boom. Instant friends until the next recess.
I am thankful for the new experiences he has had, the amazing (2!) teachers he was fortunate to have been placed with, the new friendships ,that I know as I am still friends with a dear one I went to kindergarten with, may last a lifetime, the conflicts he had & the choices he learned to to make to help come up with a solution for those, the appreciation he found for his little brother whom he missed being around each day, his feelings that were hurt so that he knows what it is like to be on the receiving end when a big first grader is making fun of your soccer skills (or lack of let's just have a moment of honesty here. But, the kid can THROW a baseball. Isn't it kind of a disservice to our kids to make them think they are awesome at everything? Maybe? Still trying to figure out how to finesse that whole thing. ) so that next fall when he is the big first grader he will hopefully recall that & extend a little more kindness to the kindergartner who is being brave out on the field, the books he was exposed to, the writing he acquired, the different languages he heard, the different shades of skin he sat by, the music he sang & danced to & the thirst for knowledge that continues to grow.
All in all it was a pretty great year. Not nearly as scary as I thought it would be. Isn't that the way though often the things that are unknown to us seem so scary, but once we step out & see what we are dealing with it isn't scary at all. We often even end up enjoying it & always seem to learn something from it. Now the trick will be to remember that when my youngest starts pre-school in the fall thus beginning a new season of time.by.myself. which is something that sounds thrilling &