Brynna starts Kindergarten in 20 days. 20 days, people, and I’ll have a kid in elementary school! How weird is that? 20 days and I’ll be the mom of a “kid” not a toddler. In 20 days my life will look totally different than it has the past 5 years. The normal I’ve come to know won’t be normal anymore. And I’m glad. I’m soooo ready to start a conversation and end it without being interrupted 5 times. or turn mid-sentence to find a naked kid covered in blue paint. (That happened yesterday.) I’ll be able to write and keep speaking engagements and attend meetings without having to pack a bag of tricks to keep her entertained at the back of the room. I’ll be an adult in the adult world from the hours of 9-3. (Or around then. I don’t actually know the school start and pickup times. I should learn that.) My time will be spent how I schedule it rather than how it is dictated by the needs of whirling dervish.
In the midst of all that I’m glad about, though, I’m still a mom. And moms can’t let ourselves just feel one thing, can we? We have to simultaneously beat ourselves up for not feeling the opposite way. I’m glad I’ll have more freedom and that makes me kind of sad. I don’t ever want to wish away her life. I don’t want her to think that the decision I made to stay home was a poor one. It’s one I’ve wrestled with, struggled against and at times even fought, but it was best for her and I’ll always pick her. Over everything else. I’ll cherish every minute spent playing the Sneaky Snacky Squirrel game in the middle of the kitchen floor. I’ll hide in my heart all the ‘firsts’ I didn’t miss. I’ll treasure every art project I got to clean up and sidewalk chalk masterpiece I got to help with. As glad as I’ll be to drop her off, I’ll miss her an hour after I do.
I’m glad that I’m sad that I’m glad. It means I’m human. It means I’m a mom. And in the middle of every happy moment is the realization they are growing up. In the midst of every failure is a lesson. For every one thing that wears you out there are 12 more that make your heart burst with love. I’m glad Brynna is healthy, happy and whole enough to step in to a world she’s never experienced, knowing that no matter what the day brings or how it feels, Mama will be waiting at the curb to celebrate, cry, laugh or dance with her.
I’m glad she’s going to school. I’m sad she’s growing up. I’m a mom and that means I feel both at exactly the same time. And I’m ok with that. I’m glad that I’m sad that I’m glad.