To New Beginnings

The night before the first day of  first grade, Sweetie lay in her bed, anxiety-ridden, crying so loud she could not hear me above her hyper-ventilating sobs.  Was she scared of the school?  No.  Was she scared of the teacher?  No.  Was she scared of learning?  Hell no.  She was scared about the new kids, even though close friends were in her class.  She was even scared of them.  She looked up to me with her little brown eyes, tears clinging to her long, beautiful eyelashes and said, “But I don’t know how to start a conversation.  What will I talk about?  I am scared.”

I hugged her tight, talked her down gently, gave her suggestions.  None of it helped.  Her fear was palpable.

It was her father that talked her down, told her a story from when he was young, ignited her imagination and calmed her.  He has YEARS of experience doing the same exact thing with me.

The next day, her and  I walked to school with trepidation, but still grinning from ear to ear.  When I picked her up from the day, she turned to me and said, “Mom, the first half of the day I did not want to be there.  I was nervous.  Then, I didn’t want to leave.  I love school.”


Sweetie is a complex little girl.  She is intelligent, helpful, matter-of-fact.  She can be …..”in charge” when it comes to what people are to do.  She also can be argumentative, yet very sensitive, not afraid to be her true self at home, nervous and shy around those that she does not know.  She is a perfectionist. She can also be manipulative from time to time, yet so free with offering her love.  In her sleep she grinds her teeth, and I know that all her little questions, her insecurities are manifesting themselves in her sleep.  I sit back and wonder, did I do this?  Do my own insecurities and indecsions wash over her become ingrained.  I try to keep all that to myself, to not let it show through, but I am who I am and of course it does.  Furthermore, the genes are there.  How do I get her to be stronger than I was, more secure than I still tend to be?


The Wise Guy also started school.  He and his sister are like night and day, but they compliment each other so well.  Wise Guy is active and a lover.  He never hesitates to tell you how much he loves you, how much he is my heart, what he loves about you and what you do together.  He just wants to play with everyone all the time, will walk right up to any kid his age or slightly older and say, “I’m Robin, your Batman.  Come on, let’s play.”

His first day of school?  He ran out of the car, waving behind him without turning around once.  Excited for the new, excited for learning, excited for playing.  Excited.

He came home, and wrote his name for the very first time.


To new beginnings.  To Sweetie finding her groove in school and rocking the socks off her teacher and friends. To Sweetie gaining confidence in herself and reaching out.   To the Wise Guy finding focus and playmates.  To the Wise Guy’s growing enthusiasm in realizing all the things he can do all by himself.

To me.  To finding a direction.  To taking time to explore my passions outside my wildly awesome children and living the life  I need to live.

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2 Responses to “To New Beginnings”

  1. SilentBen 22 September 2010 at 10:38 pm #

    Sweetie has more of me in her than you might realize. I was exactly the same way at her age – open and myself at home but very shy and reserved at school. Ironically I probably got teased more at home than at school. It is likely this factor that made it easy to relate to her crisis and talk her through it (that and lots of practice with you).
    SilentBen´s last blog ..Ebony- Ivory- and Other Hard WoodsMy ComLuv Profile


  2. Grammy 22 September 2010 at 11:06 pm #

    you present a classic parental paralyzer. I choose to assert that all negative qualities my children have demonstrated through the years come from the other genetic contributor. Denial is sweet!
    She is such a bright kid – her extreme sensitivities/fears/insecurities do need to be considered and the more important question is not where they came from but what is the best approach to facilitate her success in life. Down the road she might benefit from some counseling if maturing and experience don’t moderate these reactions.
    But other than that you already do all the right things: reinforcing all her great qualities, introducing her to the world of possibilities around her, listening to her, letting her know you are there for her, etc.
    You are really doing better than ok.


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