Tuesday, September 3, 2019


I don't mean that to sound dramatic. Or maybe I do. I've felt the prick of tears all day - shoving them down because they tried to escape in public or when I was doing something stupid enough (like dishes) to tell them now wasn't the time.

It's true, though. I'm all alone today.

My house is quiet, and clean, and calm. If I don't make a point to put on some music or watch a show on my phone, there's only the hum of my dishwasher filling up the space between rooms. Even my cats are asleep. My dog is wistfully looking out the window, wondering when her pack will be home. The energy is still.

For the first time in ten and a half years, I sent all three of my babies off to full-day school. Two of them were very ready. One was letting his tears flow freely. But I was the one really hurting.

It's just such a strange thing. Letting people you barely know spend the better part of your child's waking hours with them. Trusting them with their care, education, socialization. Having barely any say in the matter. And, I know...this is nothing new. We all do it. My kids are becoming better, smarter, more well-rounded people for doing it. It's good for them. And as Dory taught us all, "Well, you can't never let anything happen to him. Then nothing would ever happen to him."

God, it hurts. Watching them grow up and knowing how hard it is, but praying every day that they do. Just wanting them to be okay.

I tried to distract myself after they were all off to their classrooms. Matt and I went for coffee, and then I spent some Kohl's cash on, well, things for the boys (because they're all I could think about). Moms roamed the racks with their toddlers in tow and all I could think was, I hope they know. I hope they know how sad it will be when those tiny little feet aren't following them like a shadow. How sad it will be this holiday season with no little one's eyes to light up over blinking lights and gaudily decorated trees in the stores.

While I shopped, I felt nervous. I don't know why. Maybe out of hope that they were being treated kindly by their classmates. That they didn't feel lost or ignored as they learn their brand new normal. I reminded myself that they had everything - absolutely everything they needed. I packed them good lunches and snacks, they had every supply on their lists and new shoes on their feet. They were fine, prepared, and ready. But my heart wasn't.

I just finished baking them a fresh batch of cookies, and I can't wait to sit down with glasses of milk and hear all about their new adventure. It's time to re-apply mascara and go greet them with wide arms. And be endlessly grateful that for today, alone time is over.

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