[Thank you, Rookie Moms, for inspiring this post.]
So my daughter graduates from preschool today. Obviously this is a huge milestone for her, but I have come to realize that it’s also a major turning point for me. This Fall marks the beginning of “the school years” for our family — both kids will be in public elementary school (my son starts 3rd grade and my daughter will start kindergarten). I am thrilled. I am proud. And I am just a little bit devastated.
I’ve never been one of those parents who wants the kids to “stay this age a little longer.” I’ve always rejoiced in their growth and independence. But the whole “it goes by so fast” observation wistfully passed along by grandmas at the grocery store has finally sunk in.
Nothing new here. I’m not the first parent to get nostalgic at her kid’s preschool graduation. It’s just good to take a moment to look over my trajectory as a parent and recognize how much has changed. I’ll spare you the million things I could list, and simply say that the biggest thing that has changed, for me, is the acceptance of the paradox. The realization that my kids do not, will not, can not be a certain way because I’m the parent and I will it so. That I can’t take credit for their golden qualities, nor the blame for their deficiencies. That all I can do is watch and love and guide and hope.