At first, I was proud, and then I realised it would be his last.
My seven-year-old finished year one this year.
It broke my heart.
I was filled with sadness at the thought that he was no longer a ‘little kid’ – that he was growing up too quickly. The thought that year two was approaching made me apprehensive, it is sure to be tougher, more will be expected of him. I sobbed fat, warm tears at the thought it was over, at how difficult this ending was.
And then I remembered this time last year when he finished kindy and feeling exactly the same. I remember the overwhelming sadness I felt that his first year of school was over. Never to come again.
What I have realised is that life with kids is a chain of lasts. A bittersweet series of saying good-bye.
Do you remember that first year? Those milestones so beautiful and yet so heartbreaking at the same time.
The first smile, the first time he rolled, the first time he sat up, the first word. And with every moment of pride and excitement was that jaggered edge that your child was no longer a baby, never again would there be a first smile, a first laugh.
It’s a hard feeling to combat. You know you are meant to be delighted and happy and you are, but, at the same mixed-up time you are bloody sad.
It started for me in the first week. I remember taking my first son home at four days old and feeling bereft that the first few days were gone and I wasn’t getting them back.
It continued at each turn, I breastfed my children and with all of them when it came the time to wean I felt indescribably sad that the relationship was over.
Oh, the longing to prolong their babyhood.
Every teeny tiny item of slightly yellowed baby clothing I folded into the “donate” box was pressed down with a sense of sorrow. When the high-chair went, when the pram was passed on to a neighbour, when the baby bottles dived into the re-cylce bin how was I to know that was just the start?