When Dr. Foose asked on Twitter about our fondest first day of school memories, I shared my kids' favorite memories. Prima loves meeting new friends and reconnecting with old ones. Seconda loves meeting her teachers for the first time. Terza, who has only had one first day of school, loved the name game where you toss a ball around a circle.
I don't remember any of my first days of school as a student or teacher, but I remember my first day of school as a parent. That is one day I'll never forget.
Prima got sick over the last weekend of summer. When she woke on Monday, she still had a fever. Absent on the first day of kindergarten! When she woke fever-free on Tuesday, we kind of decided at the last second to send her. The Man of the House took her up to the bus in a hurry, and as soon as Prima crossed the threshold out of the house, I bawled. It just flat-out gutted me that we had made it to that point. It was awesome. I was so excited for her that my heart seemed to be trying to expand in proportion to the expansion Prima's mind and world were about to experience. The Man thought he forgot something, so before he had even closed the door he walked back in, saw my tear-streaked face and got worried.
"What's wrong? Are you hurt?"
"No. Get out! She can't see me like this!"
It was then that he realized why I was crying, and he left. I remembered I had baby Terza on my hip and preschooler Seconda in the playroom to spend the day with.
I don't remember much else of the day. I don't remember if we went to the park, or if we did crafts. I don't remember if we had a playdate, or if we ran errands. I do remember Seconda sadly asking me at around 10:30 that morning, "When will Prima be home?" Prima had been gone for ninety minutes and I wasn't the only one thinking of her for all ninety of them.
It was a long, long day until 4:25 p.m. when Prima finally got off the bus. We were so excited to see her and hear all about her big adventures in kindergarten. Unfortunately, her fever had returned. She didn't feel like talking. (That's a sign of illness in Prima that holds true to this day.) She missed the rest of the week of school.
Today is Prima's first day of fifth grade. This is the last year I can even sort of delude myself into thinking of her as a little kid. I'm going to hold on to that as long as I can this year, even if she does grow taller than me before June.