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"I didn't think I was emotional about my daughter starting school. But I am."

I was meant to write about how I am not feeling emotional about our eldest daughter starting school. I kept seeing and hearing parents being overcome about their kids starting school and I have felt strangely indifferent.

I am not generally indifferent. Twenty minutes into the Australia Day broadcast on Monday night I had cried six times. I am a crier, an emotional floodgates kind of girl. But I haven’t felt close to tears about the milestone my daughter will meet early next week.

So I concluded I was feeling unemotional about the whole thing and set out to write exactly that. Except as soon as I sat down to do just that, it dawned on me that I am feeling emotional about it. I’m just not feeling sad about it.

I am not mourning her baby days or feeling heartsick at the prospect of her spending Monday to Friday in a classroom.

I don’t feel torn about her growing up. I don’t feel like this is the end of something. And, curiously for a natural born worrier, I am not angsting over this new chapter.

I am sure once she starts there will be angst – hers, ours, her sister’s – about everything from reading to homework to friends to forgotten library books/ swimmers/lunch boxes.

But right now what I feel is excited. Properly excited because she is on the cusp of something amazing: the start of school is the start of the world opening up to her. The start of her finding and making her little mark on the world. Making friends. Learning. Playing. Becoming independent.

And all of that makes my heart explode.

It takes me back to the early days and weeks when we first had her and when I remember her as a tiny bundle of baby and think of her now, I am overcome with emotion. With disbelief, pride and joy.

Disbelief that it’s possible for five and half years to fly by so quickly.

Proud that we have nurtured that tiny bundle into the lively walking, talking character she is today.

Joy because it’s impossible to revisit the five and half years we’ve spent living together without being physically charged by the joy, laughter and love these years have entailed.

So I lied. I didn’t think I was emotional about our daughter starting school but I am. I am overjoyed about it.

How are you feeling about your child starting school?

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