So suddenly it seems to have happened, when in actuality it’s been in the works for 6 long years. Moms, when I say time flies, then I mean time flies!
Last week was orientation day at Jada’s “big school” in preparation for Grade one in just a few short months. And although we already received our invitation to the welcoming ceremony during the first half of 2016, I don’t remember feeling quite so overwhelmed back then. At the time October felt like a few YEARS away.
Of cause I’ve been looking forward to the day our daughter starts grade one. In fact, I could not be more proud. What I wasn’t quite prepared for, was being taken under by the enormous wave of emotion – mostly excitement… along with the nagging anxiety and uncertainty that I am beginning to understand comes natural to any mom. Even though I am certain we are raising a courageous young lady, I cannot help but wonder whether we instilled in her a strong enough moral compass? Have we been generous enough in our love for her to ensure she has enough self-love, self-confidence and will not easily succumb to peer pressure and bullying? Have we been too tough. Or perhaps not tough enough? How will she fend for herself on the playground that will literally shape her future. So many questions and emotions. Unfortunately there’s no ‘rewind’ or “do over” button in this thing called parenthood and are we forced to believe we are doing our best as we go along.
Finding the perfect school was no easy feat either. We spent a monumental amount of time researching which schools in the area were best suited for our baby. Because she is still our baby after all, and only the best will do. We needed to be absolutely sure the school we committed to invest the future of our child in, does not only offer of the finest education, culture and sport, but that she will also be happy with her new extended family.
With this in mind, we narrowed our gazillion options down to three and proceeded onto the next round of “the biggest loser.” Whether it was a private institution or not was also not high on our list of importance. Actually, to be truthful, it didn’t make the list at all. A good foundation was way more important. Firm but loving educators was important. A school invested in the success of our childrens’ future was important. And a school that believes in teaching with compassion was more important to us than anything money can buy.
Fortunately we received affirmation of all these traits by word of mouth for Gene Louw Primary from other moms and dads who already had their kids enrolled there and who was evidently happy with their choice.
This also became apparent to us as we sat in the lovely school hall on orientation day, listening to the headmaster laying down the house rules all the while making us feel welcome. As the school’s choir sang, who has been winning one eisteddfods after another for the last couple of years, I could feel the anxiety and uncertainty slowly leaving me. When I finally dared to look down at Jada safely nestled between her dad and I, expecting her to be a bundle of nerves, but instead found her smiling, hands tightly clutching the sides of the seat, feet swinging back and forth, her excitement now mirroring mine, I knew that no matter how unsure, I am ready for the next set of challenges motherhood has in store for me.
So to you, my follow moms, also sending off your little ones to big school next year, or the next, or the next…remember, no matter how uncertain, you’re doing a fabulous job!