You see, Dixie was eager to go to school, just not eager to have her mom follow her around like a dork, taking pictures. Every time she saw the camera, the scowl replaced her big grin. I think her biggest concern was having a new class and teacher--she was very attached to her previous teacher. She also informed me upon arrival that, "Mommy, I'm done learning. I know all I need to know, so why am I here?"
Apparently, she was still lacking in a bit of knowledge. When asked what she learned yesterday, she reported proudly that, " 'Train' starts with 'I' and so does 'Indian'. And at lunch, we had five more minutes, and I couldn't finish it in that time. And that you shouldn't talk and eat at the same time because our teacher did and got to coughing."
See, this is why we pay the big bucks for private preschool. You can't just learn this stuff anywhere.
I had wondered if today would be harder for me than yesterday. Dixie went to school last year, but Melody did not and Melody has been my near-constant companion for over five years (counting gestation). Dixie is more attached to Daddy.
My schedule looked like this:
- 7:30 chiropractor
- 7:50 go home, get dressed and get girls loaded
- 8:15 drop-off girls at school
- 8:30 water class at the gym
- 9:30 hot tub and shower
- 10:30 come home and lie in my nifty traction device.
I insisted on the 'ready to go' pose:
as well as the 'we actually like each other' pose:
Here they are going into the school:
and here is Melody, ready to learn:
I did make it to everything on time. Water class about killed me. The instructor recently went to a seminar to learn new things to do. She did not choose to introduce the changes gradually. Yeouch.
Also, today was my first day to lie in my little traction kit. I was very disappointed that I did not get to hang upside down, strapped on the back of the door like on 80's sitcoms and then have someone shut the door and trap me in a closet or room alone and leave me there all night, forgotten. Instead, I lie on this foam wedge with this tube pinning my head down for gradually increasing increments of time.
It was the longest five minutes of my life. It left me dizzy and had my neck positively throbbing. I am almost certain I had positioned it exactly right, because only a device designed for PT (Pain and Torture, NOT Physical Therapy) could bring such carefully calculated and targeted pain.
After sleeping off my rough five minutes (did I mention that Charlie was riding my knee like a horse while I was trying to do this?) I went to get girls. Melody gets picked up inside the foyer. The Mother's Day Out classes come out in a line, backpacks on, very orderly and quiet, and sit against a wall while they get checked out.
I barely recognized Melody. I wish I'd had my camera to show you--she just looked so grown up with her dress and leggings and matching bow, her shoes switched to the correct feet, the backpack hanging from her shoulders, her back straight, her eyes at attention and her head high. Surely this could not be my tiny baby girl.
And then there was the contrast of her next to those other big kids. Melody is the oldest in her class by several months, yet is clearly the tiniest. She looked like a miniature with her little face, scrawny arms, legs so tiny that her leggings sagged and bunched. I realized just how tiny a 31-pound four-and-a-half-year-old is when I saw her next to the three-year-old giants.
She greeted me with a hug and announced, "I am going to tell you about absolutely everything that I learned and did today." She began to dictate a rather lengthy list as we got in the van and went through the pick-up line to get Dixie. Dixie got in the van and began the litany of her day and I thought about how nice it was this morning to have calm and still and quiet, but also how dreadfully boring. When Melody and Dixie re-entered my day, it sprang to life again. The sun shone again. Their sweet little chatter just filled me.
Until the bickering resumed.