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Back To School, With A Side of Regret

A week from today, the day will start differently than it has these last 100 days or so. I will pack my daughter a lunch, put her school supplies in her backpack, and drive her to school.

Unlike last fall when she went to kindergarten, she won’t be riding a school bus; this year we’ll be driving her to her new school. Also new? This year she’s hanging over my shoulder as I type this, reading every word.

She’s growing up.

This year she’s also sporting a sassy new hairdo, three loose teeth, and an attitude fed by entirely too many teen shows watched on Netflix while her parents tried to get work done.

This is my kid. My BIG kid. She’s six, she’s smart as hell, and she’s pretty much ready to take on the world.

I’m gonna miss her something fierce.

It’s weird, this whole parenting thing. More often than not, on a given day, my voice is raised in exasperation. “Stop climbing on that!” “Stop tormenting the dog!” “Please eat your dinner!” Not to mention that now, with my big girl, I’m often saying things like, “No more Hannah Montanah!” “Stop printing your pictures!” “No, you can’t ride your scooter around the block alone!”

But even as I face little frustrating hurdles each day, that incredible initial love the way everything in the world changed when I finally held her in my arms, how everything came into sharp focus for the first time, how the universe tilted on its axis it’s still there, underneath it all.

It will be there when I pack her lunches.

It will be there as I encourage her to learn more, grow more, do more.

It will be there as she makes new friends.

It will be there as she continues to grow and change, away from me, toward herself.

It will be there when I am trying to get her out the door next Thursday morning, when I chase her around with a hairbrush, when I holler up the stairs for her to get dressed already, and when I hunt her down to brush her teeth before hurry up! you’re late for school! comeoncomeoncomeon!

That love is under it all.

I am so grateful that school is back, but I am gonna really miss sitting across from that face each day.

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My daughter is keeping her teeth (the ones she still has, damn tooth fairy) healthy this year with Listerine Kids. A big thanks to Listerine Kids for sponsoring this campaign. Click here to see more of the discussion. 

 

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