Monday, September 3, 2012

School

Ah yes, here we are, the First Day of School Eve. No matter how many years I do this (and this will be year 15) I still get jittery the night before school starts back up. For the last few years part of my tummy turns were because of Abby. Despite the fact that this will be her fifth year of school (since she did three years of preschool, and one year of kindergarten), she always had different teachers, and sometimes even went to different schools. It seemed that by the time we got familiar and comfortable in a place, we had to leave and move on. Going into each new year we never had that certainty that everything would be alright - that we wouldn't have struggles, and that Abby would enjoy herself. She always did, enjoy herself that is, and we have loved all of her teachers and support staff, it's just that there was a niggling doubt somewhere in the back of my head when it came to her starting at a new place and with new people. What if they didn't "get" Abby? What if they couldn't see past her stubbornness to the warm and loving little girl she is? What if the teachers didn't understand my need to be in close contact with them? What if Abby hated it? I had all sorts of questions swirling in my brain, as I'm sure they swirl in every parent's brain at the beginning of a school year.

I remember clearly sitting at the last parent teacher conference with Abby's last preschool teacher, who as it happens has a son with Down syndrome, and as I began to get weepy about leaving her classroom, she so kindly smiled and put her hand on mine for added reassurance. She told me that we were coming into a really good time with Abby, school-wise. "The elementary years are great!" she said. She told me how nice it was that in those years she and her husband didn't have to worry about where their son would go the next year. She told me that we had a few years where Abby would be in the same place, and that it would be so nice not to worry.

I have to say that I get it now. I have absolutely no worries about Abby's day tomorrow. She has the same wonderful teachers and the same lovable bus driver (yes, we checked on that one - yeah!), and she is going off to a place she is familiar with. With Abby the familiar and expected are very good things. It is such a nice feeling to know that tomorrow will be a good day, and that she is in loving and very capable hands.

Thankfully Abby fell asleep early tonight. She is excited to see her teachers and "her kids" tomorrow, and I'm very excited for her.

Since I've posted pictures of her on her first and last days of school last year,
I thought I would show you Abby's first day of school - ever. This was preschool
in 2008, when Abby was a mere three and a half years old.

Right away she found the sand table. I think they constantly had problems
tearing her away from that thing all year - she loved her sensory activities!

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