Tuesday, July 28, 2009

He's Growing Up

This week Z was invited by his wonderful Kindermusik teacher, Ms. R, to come on an "Adventure" and try out the preschool music class. This is the class that he will be enrolled in this September and she wanted both he and I to experience it before then:) Z is in love with Ms. R and was very excited to be able to see her on this special "adventure" day.

In the car I told him that this was a special "big kid" class and that mommy would be waiting for him in the next room instead of being with him in class. This idea didn't really sink in and he just said, "Okay Momma". We were the first to arrive and so we watched her set up all sorts of fun ocean things. The theme of the class that day was a trip to the beach and Z dove right into the fishing set and the sand table that she had set up. Ms. R told him he had a special spot on the rug with his name on it (right next to her spot) and he went over with me and found it right away. As the other children started to arrive, Z's anxiety set in and he started to cling to me (one of the boys was a bit noisy and Z hates noise). Ms. R told him all about how he was going to sit next to her and then took him into the other room to show him where I would sit. He was not too big on this idea but when she called the kids to the circle, he went with her and sat down right next to her. I quickly exited, trying not to cry.

In the next room I busied myself with my schoolwork. My friend W from Kindermusik came in and asked if this was the first time I have ever left Z someplace, fighting back the tears I answered, "yes". I have been attending Kindermusik classes with Z since he was 4 months old! This was the first time he had been in that room without me......the first time I had left him anywhere (other than with family or close friends). I started to cry a bit and W decided to skip her errands and stay and chat. It was very sweet of her to talk me through my first time dropping Z off :)

The 45 minutes flew by and before I knew it Z was coming down the hallway to find me (looking a little unsure if I was going to be there or not). When he saw me, his face lit up and he jumped into my arms. We walked into the class and he walked me over to his spot for the parent/child part of the class. I was amazed....Z was a different kid! He was singing, doing the movements of the songs and truly participating in the class. In our parent/child class he often clings to me, buries his head in my lap or is just plain silly. This was a new grown up Z and I fought back tears once again. I was so proud of him, proud to see that he is growing up and doesn't need me to always be by his side. It is time for him to "fly" from the nest and start to experience things on his own.

In September, Z will start preschool 2 days a week and this class one day a week. I know that first week I am going to be an emotional mess (and also very pregnant) but it is for the best. I can't hold him back any longer....he is no longer a baby. As my friend W said, you will drop him off on the first day of school in September as a "baby" and pick him up on the last day of June as a "young child". I better start stocking up on tissues now!

2 comments:

Connie Weiss said...

Oh my gosh....that must have been tough! He did so great! What a big boy!

Mom said...

The tears are welling up in my eyes like they did the day I left you at preschool as a very young three year old, the day you went to kindergarten, first grade, college, got married and the day Z was born. I am not trying to rush you through Z's life, just remind you that because you love that little guy (and all the other little guys that follow) the tears will come at every step of their lives. That's what being a parent is all about. We love that our children are growing up to be such independent people, we are proud of their accomplishments, but sad to let them go - thinking that they won't need us anymore.
Well, if you let them fly, they will often fly back home (sometimes literally) and let you know that you are still an important part of their lives and are still needed.
I feel that I am just as close to you and your sisters now as I was when you were babies. Our relationships are at a different level, but still as important and special. I think another example, that you are very close to, would be Grammy J, N and B. So it works with both boys and girls. We let you all fly and you still fly home.
I think both Grammy J and I did a wonderful job raising our kids (if I do say so myself). Not because we are fantastic women (which of course we are) or "Super Moms" (which we weren't), but because we flew by the seat of our pants, made mistakes (which we did), let you all make mistakes (which you did), were there when you needed us (whether you wanted us to be or not), and listened. I am not sure if that is the recipe for raising 5 great kids, but we did - "The proof is in the pudding."
I think your father and I would be very wealthy if we had bought stock in Heinz Ketcup (for LB) and Kleenx (for all the emotional ones in our famiy). Tears are part of the territory of being part of our family and being a parent.
You and your sisters (and your husbands) are, or are going to be, wonderful parents. Maybe not super moms and dads, but I know Dad and I have, and will have, the best grandchildren any grandparent could ask for, because we have the best children any parent could ever ask for. Got tissues?

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