To the teacher soon to lead my child’s class,
Can you see how nervous we are as we drop our kids off at school for the first time this year?
Can you feel the anxiety in the air? Whether it’s our little guy’s first day or we are back for another year having just survived the holidays we all feel the same.
There are things we want you to know, things we so desperately want to tell you as we catch your eye in the school line and exchange pleasantries about the recent stifling heat.
We want to latch onto you and tell you oh, such important, necessary facts. We need you to know them about our child before the school year starts.
I want to tell you how my son chews his collar when he is worried about what’s ahead, that if you see him tugging at the frayed edges of his shirt and placing it to his mouth it’s because he needs reassurance about what he is about to do.
I want to tell you about how he touches his fingers together lightly in anticipation when he is excited and bounces slightly on his toes.
I want to tell you to calm him you need to hold his hand gently and squeeze and mutter over and over again about how he will be okay. That when he stands to talk he won’t meet your eye but not because he is rude, just shy and unsure.
I want you to know that he loves to draw, that the googly-eyed square things on the page aren’t monsters but aliens and that they live on a land named ZED and eat purple seaweed.
I want you to know how he loves to eat oranges. That he will squeeze out every last shred down to the pith but will hold onto the skin until he is softly told to throw it away. That he needs to be reminded to drink water as he often forgets and that at first he may be too scared to ask to go to the toilet but that soon he will gain his confidence.
I want to tell you of the other children, of who he has met before and which ones make him laugh, of the one who he admires and the ones who make him afraid.
I want you to know of how, this summer, he finally summoned up the courage to knock on the door of the kids next door and ask if he could please play too and how proud he was when they said yes and he finally, finally made a friend all by himself.
Watch: Is that what all mums do on the first day back at school? Post continues after video....
I want you to know that when he first started pre-school all of the age of three he had a lisp and he once pushed a boy who wouldn’t give him the blocks but how he doesn’t do it now.
I want you to know that when he goes to bed at night he likes three stories and three kisses and if I don’t come back in three times he sobs under the covers.
I want to tell you he likes Star Wars and knights with shining swords, how he loves to play soccer and cuddle his dog.
I want to tell you how he still calls me Mama and while he may be five, to me he’s still the same tiny, fuzzy-haired little being that came into my world and turned my heart upside down.
I want to tell you to love and protect and care for my child just as fiercely as you would your own.
And yet I won’t.
I won’t tell you this.
I won’t flood you with details or implore you to like him because I know this is your job.
I know that your job is to get to know my child, to care for my child, to mould and shape and help my child grow all in your own way and that its time for me to let him go just that little bit and be who he is when he is with you.
I won’t tell you because I trust you to find it out yourself.
So teacher as I hand you my heart this year I will hold my tongue and smile and allow you to teach my son exactly the best way you know how.
What do you want to tell your child's teacher (but probably won't)?