Today was kindergarten orientation.
It was a short and simple day at school--just a half hour in the library for the kids while the parents met with the teacher, followed by a treasure hunt around the school to get the kids familiar with the locations of key rooms.
Talmage was on Cloud 9, while I couldn't get the pit out of my stomach.
As I've mentioned before, deciding what to do about his schooling has not been an easy or straightforward decision.
And while we've felt guided toward this decision,
walking through halls full of rowdy kids running off the excitement of the first day of school
and surveying the styles and attitudes of children who are trying hard to be teenagers
made me dread leaving my 5-year-old
in a place where I will no longer have control over his environment.
At the peak of my anxieties, we walked toward the doors to go back into the school after walking around the school yard.
A boy, probably about 10, came dashing up to the door to charge through.
And then he noticed Talmage and he stopped, held the door open, and said sweetly,
"It's okay! You can go in. Here!"
And at that moment a feeling of peace washed over me.
It's hard to let go and relinquish my control over his environment and his attitudes,
but we hope and pray that he can be an influence for good.
Last night, Sam gave him a father's blessing.
After he finished, Talmage jumped off the chair and gave me a hug declaring,
"That made me even more excited!!"
When I told him I knew he would do good things,
he told me that if he saw a kid across the classroom who looked nervous,
he would go and ask his teacher if it would be okay if he sat by them.
And then he told Sam he thought he should give me a blessing so I wouldn't miss him too much.
As he stood there, his hands gripping my upper arms, looking soberly into my eyes,
I reassured him that I would be okay and that I was happy he was going to school.
Because as hard as it is, I truly am.
As a side note, this guy is starting a new semester as well, with a full load of graduate courses
in addition to his regular research.
After High School, his Associate's degree, Bachelor's degree, PhD, and now Master's program,
this would be his first day of 23rd grade!!!