Today was Cullen’s first official day of preschool! Sniff – where does the time go? But in reality, before I sound too dramatic or over-the-top, the class he is entering this year is a very beginner’s version of preschool classes. More of a dipping a toe in the water type of thing. But still, I am a mom, and therefore cannot help but feel sappy and overly emotional over these types of milestones.
Because of his fall birthday, Cullen is just outside the age requirement to enter the two-year-old’s class at the preschool we chose. So for this year, he’ll be in the toddler’s class instead – mixing with other kids ranging from just-over one to just-under two. This class is actually for both parents and toddlers, which means that I will be there with Cullen helping to supervise, meeting other parents, and helping guide him through the lessons and programs for each day. See what I mean about dipping a toe in the water?
The great thing about this program though, is that they also have an additional classroom that offers drop-in hours – essentially childcare with light curriculum and lessons. I’m signing Cullen up for one additional morning in this space each week, and this time he’ll be there alone. I know that he’s ready for more instruction and interaction with new adults, and he thrives in environments where he is challenged and socially motivated. This will also give me a critical morning at home for just me and baby brother – something that Cullen got so much of, and that I’d like to be able to provide for this new little guy, even if just in short bits here and there.
Our family has been down and out with a nasty bug this week, and I have been the slowest to recover. There was no way I would be welcomed into a classroom full of small children with all my wheezing and coughing, but Cullen and Casey were both in good shape. As much as I hated to miss it myself, I was mostly just happy that Cullen was still going to be there for his first day. I snapped a picture, blew a kiss, and watched my toddler head out the door with dad for what I will forever be calling his “first day of school.”
These are just baby steps toward the much bigger milestones like multi-day care, FULL-day care, and eventually real big kid school like kindergarten and elementary school. At 36 weeks pregnant, I’m way too emotional to even think about things like that right now though, so for now I’m soaking up this baby moment that is making me both sentimental for my little guy, and yet so proud of the amazing little boy he is becoming.