First Day

Kindergarten, first day ~ August 19, 2013
Her hands. Tan, fumbling, bitten-on fingernail sweetness clenched onto the skinny laminated sign, so determined. These soft sturdy fingers curled around the letters L I L A, while her body lunged for that corner chair with metal feet and green canvas harness. This prized seat was just the same as every other in the room, save for one thing: Its location was special. The name sign quickly and haphazardly slapped directly in front of it was the guarantee that Lila, fighter for 5-year-old causes bigger than life, would sit by her best friend's side for one whole week. Her first five days of Kindergarten would, now most assuredly, be spent sitting right next to her twin.

I am blessed to bear witness to the tiniest moments, like this one from Friday's Meet the Teacher night, and it's become an old, familiar feeling. My heart lurches into the past and the future all at once, leaving a lump in my throat that's gone in an instant. Catching these moments in the palm of my hand takes practice, because it's like catching sand. Fleeting, sparkling, then gone. So when I am able to hold on to the second or two, and grasp the significance of the whole of all of these moments, my memory bank becomes richer, my heart happier.

Today, the sun isn't up yet, but I'm stretching into my white jeans and positivity-inspired, tangerine-colored tee. This was going to be a happy day: Kindergarten. First day. New beginnings. Bright tees and great seats. And I overheard a quiet sunrise conversation on the couch:
"Are you nervous?"
"Why not?"'
"Why should I be?"
"Well. What do you think is going to be different about Kindergarten?"
 "We're going to meet a lot more friends and there's a different playground. And maybe homework."
I held their hands when we walked the short distance to their new classroom from the car. Let go of their sweet, warm palms when it was time. Said goodbye. Have a wonderful day. I love you. Got into the car. Turned on the ignition, then waited for these hand holding hands of mine to stop shaking.

Turns out, it was a happy day for all of us. And tonight Lila looked at me, held my face in her hands, and said, "You did good."
To see the world in a grain of sand, and to see heaven in a wild flower, hold infinity in the palm of your hands, and eternity in an hour ~ William Blake


Oh yay!! I am so glad they had a great first day! Mine go back next Monday. I will have a Junior and a pre-K student again! Oh my heart!! LOL!!
I haven't read Lila Marin in awhile...I'm happy to be back--your words make me smile...and there are a few tiny tears holding back behind my memories. My best friend reminded me yesterday that we met on the "first day of kindergarten" 32 years ago when we were dropping off our babies--oh where do all those first days of school go? Thank you for writing things down Jen..I need to get back to that--you've inspired me, and i can't help but agree with Lila: "You did good."
Heather said…
Hi Jen! I'm Heather and I was just wondering if you would be able to answer my question about your blog! If you could email me at Lifesabanquet1(at)gmail(dot)com that would be great!

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