Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Made it through Monday

Can you believe it? We survived Konner's first day of school, and even survived his second day!! Who knew we'd all actually make it! Let me tell you, leaving your 5 year old son in a big room full of people he doesn't know at all is so much harder than you'd ever imagine!

I had such a hard time going to sleep on Sunday, all I could think about was leaving my tiny little boy in that room by himself (and yes, he is still tiny!). I have not ever had to leave him anywhere other than a family members house and I was extremely nervous about it. But he was awesome!! I was so proud of him, to me he was absolutely the bravest little boy in the world!

A few days before I had asked him what he wanted for breakfast. I told him this was a very special breakfast because it was his first day of school so I would make whatever he wanted. I listed several different things that I know he loves, breakfast casserole, pumpkin muffins, pancakes...anything he wanted. Out of all those options he picked Malt-O-Meal! Only Konner would ever pick Malt-O-Meal! :o) But he loved it and was so excited.

When we got to his school we took him into the Movement Room, found the row for his class and he sat right down. Colby snapped a few pictures, we gave him kiss-hug-and-bye (our routine before going anywhere) and that was it. He sat right down with the other kids and started watching Curious George until it was time to go to his class. Somehow he wasn't nervous at all. He didn't seem upset in the least that we were leaving him there. In fact the only thing that bothered him was that people kept walking in front of him so he couldn't see the tv. :o) I have no idea how he did so well, I would have been a nervous wreck.

(Right before we left the house)

(Watching Curious George)

I can't even begin to tell you how weird it was to have him gone all day. The house is so very quiet without him. The girls are very mellow when he's not here. And yes, it is weird to get only 2 cups instead of 3! Lexi had no idea what to do with him gone either. When it was time for lunch she actually didn't want to eat, she said she would wait to eat until Konner got home and went to lay down for her nap. She was so excited to see him when we picked him up!

As good as he did when we dropped him off, he had a very hard time when we picked him up! There was such relief on his face when he saw me standing there. As we walked back to the car I asked him all about his day and he broke down. He ended up just sobbing and telling me it was such a very long day. He asked me to please not bring him back. :o( I'm telling you, my heart broke right then! I knew I would have to take him back and I told him as much. He just hugged me and cried.

I felt like the worst mom in the world! How could I take him there every day and just leave him? I'm supposed to protect him and take care of him, that's my job! It's been hard enough just thinking about this experience but now it's here and he hates it?! I felt like my heart was breaking the whole way home.

On the way home I took him to get a chocolate coke from Sonic and he asked me if we could sit on the couch with a blanket when we got home. He said he wanted to have a long talk all about his day. Yet another heart breaking/melting moment. They came one after the other all day! :o) So of course we did sit and talk when we got home. As I started talking to him and asking him questions all about it he totally opened up and couldn't stop telling me all about it. Turns out he had a pretty good day, it was just very very long! That was such a relief!

Yesterday was even better, although he did say it was longer than the first day! :o) And i'm believing that each day will continue to improve! I've said for months now that I really think this is the best option for him and how much I think he'll enjoy it. It's just going to take a week or two to get him adjusted. It's good for me though, I spend a lot of the day praying for him that's for sure!

Anyways, I just had to share how everything went. It was hard and had some very sad moments but we all made it through and things are getting better and easier every day! :o)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Not ready for Monday

Well it's here. Somehow this time has come. I was never asked for permission nor did I ever offer it willingly and yet came. In just one more short day Konner will start school. It's so hard putting what i'm feeling into words, the emotions are all over the place. One minuet i'm thrilled to death and can't wait for him to start and in the very next breath, i'm in tears. We've known about this for months. We've planned and talked about this since January and yet somehow it still managed to sneak up on me.

I was talking to some friends about this yesterday because i've been a little bit surprised at how hard i'm taking this. One of the girls told me that something she's noticed in her friends is, mothers who's whole world revolves around their kids seem to have the hardest time with these kinds of situations. When she said that, I realized that's been my problem! For 5 years i've been a mom. That one word defines me. Yes i'm a wife and I pour everything I am into that role as well but having young children has just consumed me and been my complete focus for 5 years.

I've been there to see every hurt. I've been there to hear every laugh. I've been there to see every new thing he's learned. Now I won't be. He will be gone for 8 hours every day. I know it sound stupid but that's so hard for me!

For 5 years i've spent my days getting cups and snacks and sorting through sibling arguments. Those days are now coming to an end. I realized as I got Konner a cup yesterday, I won't be doing that all day anymore. It seems so small but yet it hit me so hard! I've dreamed of the day where sippy cups didn't take up the majority of my day and for Konner, that day has come. Now that it's here I know i'm going to miss it.

Yesterday I made a conscious effort to savor every moment. Yesterday was our last normal weekday for the four of us. Starting Monday we will begin a new normal and while i'm so thrilled about all the new things to come, i'm doing everything I can to enjoy these last few days.

Karen Kingsbury wrote a children's book some time ago titled "Let me hold you longer". In it she talks about how we as parents look so forward to each "first" our child experiences and yet never stop to savor each "last" as well. So over these last few days i've been trying to stop and notice as well as savor each "last" with Konner. For some reason come Monday, he won't have aged any and yet somehow, he'll be so much older! I'm sure i'll post again sometime early next week to talk about his first day or first few days at school so for now, i'll leave you with the words of "Let me hold you longer"...

Let Me Hold You Longer

Long ago you came to me,
a miracle of firsts,
First smiles and teeth and baby steps,
a sunbeam on the burst.

But one day you will move away
and leave to me your past
And I will be left thinking of
a lifetime of your lasts…

The last time that I held a bottle
to your baby lips
The last time that I lifted you
and held you on my hip.

The last night when you woke up crying,
needing to be walked,
When last you crawled up with your blanket,
wanting to be rocked.

The last time when you ran to me,
still small enough to hold.
The last time that you said you’d marry
me when you grew old.

Precious, simple moments and
bright flashes from your past-
Would I have held on longer if
I’d known they were your last?

Our last adventure to the park,
your final midday nap,
The last time when you wore your favorite
faded baseball cap.

Your last few hours of kindergarten,
those last few days of first grade,
Your last at bat in Little League,
last colored picture made.

I never said good-bye to all
your yesterdays long passed.
So what about tomorrow-
will I recognize your lasts?

The last time that you catch a frog
in that old backyard pond.
The last time that you run barefoot
across our fresh-cut lawn.

Silly, scattered images
will represent your past.
I keep on taking pictures,
never quite sure of your lasts…

The last time that I comb your hair
or stop a pillow fight.
The last time that I pray with you
and tuck you in at night.

The last time when we cuddle
with a book, just me and you
The last time you jump in our bed
and sleep between us two.

The last piano lesson,
last vacation to the lake.
Your last few weeks of middle school,
last soccer goal you make.

I look ahead and dream of days
that haven’t come to pass.
But as I do, I sometimes miss
today’s sweet, precious lasts…

The last time that I help you with
a math or spelling test.
The last time when I shout that yes,
your room is still a mess.

The last time that you need me for
a ride from here to there.
The last time that you spend the night
with your old tattered bear.

My life keeps moving faster,
stealing precious days that pass,
I want to hold on longer-
want to recognize your lasts…

The last time that you need my help
with details of a dance.
The last time that you ask me for
advice about romance.

The last time that you talk to me
about your hopes and dreams.
The last time that you wear a jersey
for your high school team.

I’ve watched you grow and barely noticed
seasons as they pass.
If I could freeze the hands of time,
I’d hold on to your lasts.

For come some bright fall morning,
you’ll be going far away.
College life will beckon
in a brilliant sort of way.

One last hug, one last good-bye,
one quick and hurried kiss.
One last time to understand
just how much you’ll be missed.

I’ll watch you leave and think how fast
our time together passed.
Let me hold on longer, God,
to every precious last.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

All too soon, the clock will strike midnight...

This is a note my husband Colby wrote on his facebook. It was so beautiful that I decided to steal it and post it here! :o)

All too soon, the clock will strike midnight...

I have three children. I love all of my children with everything I have. It is hard to explain to anyone who only has one child how this can be. When you only have one child you love them with your whole heart. In fact they so fill your heart, that you can't imagine having anymore love to give. But when you have another child, your love is not split, it is doubled. It's as if you suddenly have another heart to give. And I think anyone who has multiple children would testify to this.

Having established that fact, I would like to take a minute to talk about just one of my children: My middle daughter Lexi. I have been accused (by certain parties who shall remain unnamed) of playing favorites with her and being softer on her than I am the others. While the jury is still out on this matter, I will say that none of them can melt my heart the way she can. One of our favorite things to do is dance to Steven Curtis Chapman's "Cinderella". She puts on her Cinderella dress-up outfit, I pick her up, and we do our best waltz to these words "So I'll dance with Cinderella, while she is here in my arms. Because I know something the prince never knew. Yes I'll dance with Cinderella. I don't want to miss even one song. Because all to soon the clock will strike midnight...and she'll be gone." There are many things in my life I would like to forget. But there are some things I hope never to forget. These moments when she is "daddy's little girl" are some of the moments I cling to, desperate to remember them through senility and old age.

We spent yesterday evening at Wonderland Park. Since Konner had his favorite cousin there, and Jamie had her sister to ride the rides with her that I could not handle, me and Lexi spent a great deal of time just the two of us (a privilege I happily accepted). We rode the ferris wheel with Jamie's Dad and Grandmother, and I let her bury her face in my shirt when she decided it was scary. She rode the cars, well, only the pink one. She rode the ponies and I stood by her, then switched her to another pony when she decided she needed "to hold on to that thingy (the reigns)", and then rode on a pony with roses in it's hair when she decided I needed to ride next to her. One of the last things she wanted to do was ride the Frog Hopper again. We made it in line as they were about to close it down, and they agreed to allow one more ride. As the ride began to rise, and then bounce downward repeatedly, Lexi started giggling. As she did I was reminded of a speech from (of all things) the sitcom "Friends", as a man who's girlfriend broke up with him tries to re-win her affections with these words: "If I had known the last time I saw you would be the last time, I would have stopped to memorize your face, the way you move. If I had known the last time I kissed you would be the last time, I never would have stopped." So there I stood, drinking in every individual laugh. Memorizing them. Saving them away for the day when that sound no longer fills my house, and purposing to treasure every time that I am fortunate enough to hear her call me "Daddy"

You see, I decided a long time ago that I will be the dad who is at every recital, every softball game, and every rock concert (even if it is only in our garage). I will kiss every owie, I will drink every cup of tea, I will dry every tear, I will return every hug, and I will try with every breath to be worthy of the gift God has given me. The gift called fatherhood. I will love them, I will protect them, and I will be there. I will teach them the great lessons of life someday. But for now, as the little moments of life go flying by, I will put my burdens aside to enjoy a simple living room waltz. And I will not miss even one song.