On Friday morning, a few weeks after Jayce started Year 2, Hannah started preschool. I felt like we had been dangling it in front of her for forever, with her visiting her classroom in July and asking to go regularly since. Every day when we dropped Jayce off at his class or picked him up after school she asked “Can I go to my Butterfly class now?” and I did my very best to distract her. But I was out of tricks and it was soooo time.
I have been saying for a bit now that I think Hannah is ready for preschool.
When we go to different places to play she doesn’t cling to me, she doesn’t want me to play with her, or need me to help her with whatever she is doing. She is independent and energetic, always singing or chatting away, and frankly, she is getting bored with me. Over the course of the last few weeks I have had to work harder than ever have before to keep her entertained and happy. We make trips to the Children’s Centre and the park, to the library and friends’ houses, to the store and the coffee shop as we did before, but it’s no longer enough. She has outgrown the “small outing and then back to the house for lunch” stage of things that worked so well for us. No matter how long we stay at the park she wants to stay longer, she doesn’t sit happily in the cafe for a snack, she is bored and loud in the store.
She is so ready for more and preschool can give her a great dose of the things that she is lacking right now.
I think preschool will go just fine and she’ll be very happy. But I think after she’s spent a few hours playing she will realize that she hasn’t had a snuggle from her mom in a while and be sad. Or she’ll get hurt, or a kid will hurt her feelings, or something will startle her, or she’ll have an accident and the fact that she hasn’t seen me in a few hours will amplify what she’s feeling.
Which is why I’m so glad that it is only a 3 hour session. Because I will be charging full speed ahead up to the school to pick her up, armed with food, and eager for snuggles myself.
On her first day of school a friend texted me to tell me that the older kids were outside at the same time as the kids in preschoolers and that the siblings were playing sweetly together. When I asked Hannah about it at pickup, she said, “Mom, Jayce gived me a kiss on the cheek AND on the lips!!”
On the way into school this morning, her second day, I asked Jayce if he’d like to come with me to take her into her classroom because she was feeling a little nervous. He took her hand and they walked in in front of me, and I heard him say, “Hannah let’s go into your class. Do you want me to come see you today at outdoor play again?” Sweeeeeeet boy!!
On Hannah’s first morning of school she was escorted by a grand entourage. She requested that Chris and Chelsea come with her to school, plus Jayce and I. Chelsea walked her to her door and Chris dropped off Jayce and hung around waiting for me. (Waiting for me to crack, that is, and to take me for coffee as I had asked/instructed him to do weeks ago.)
The first day went pretty much as to be expected.
She went into class, hung up her things, and started painting. And then she did more and more painting all day long, including in many places all over her preschool dress, which did make me laugh a little because it was a SHOCKING amount of paint for such a small amount of time. Apparently she also played with a skipping rope, ate an orange, read a story, and went potty 2 times. This was my full preschool report from her, not including the kisses she received from Jayce that I mentioned earlier.
The teachers told me that she did brilliantly and had a great time, but was a little sad at the end telling them that she was ready to go home now. They said it was obviously a long day for her but that she had done great.
And I was ready for her. I had lunch for her to eat on the way home, we snuggled for a bit on the couch, and then again for stories before she laid down for a much-needed nap.
Overall I’d say it was a complete success.
Just for kicks, here are my thoughts and a post from Jayce’s first day of preschool just over 3 years ago.