Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Ring the Bell; School's Back In!

Jarrah started school today. It was a long, hot August with no school or camp. Sure, we had a lot of fun at the pool and beach and park and zoo, and lots of quality time with "frenz," but some days got overshadowed by a long morning in the house in the era of "Childproof II: Someone Turned My Baby Into a Raccoon!"

Now that's she's learned how to carry her little plastic IKEA chairs, counters, cabinets and light switches that were formerly out of bounds have been reimagined as stimulating fun. Grocery bags, purses and stacks of mail are reconfigured as tableaux on the floor, with telltale chunks of partially gnawed snacks guiding the way. She stands at the bathroom sink, even without her stool now, for elaborate OCD handwash marathons; occasionally, I'll be lost in thought at the computer only to realize that I've been hearing the water running for 10 minutes. A couple times I've heard little footsteps and a slam, and by the time I've flung open the bathroom door, she's pantsless with armloads of TP, telling me "I need some privacy." Scariest of all, she can now open both the refrigerator and freezer, so I frequently have frozen or spilling items presented an inch below my chin with the command "Open."

Yup, school couldn't get here fast enough. And today, the day was finally nigh. Although I had somehow neglected to get any of her Sharpie-labeled ziploc posessions ready last night, I managed to get her kitted out in under an hour. This time, I didn't get emotional as I waved goodbye in my nightgown, and she knew the drill so well that she hoisted her lunchbox, blew me a kiss, and called "I'm going to preschool to see frenz!" on the way to David's car. It was gloriously, deafeningly quiet as I sipped my coffee.

When it was time for pick up, there were some subtle changes from last year. Last year, I slunk in and out while everyone laughed and gabbed; now I know a bunch of other moms, and there was a lot of yoo-hooing. When I went into the classroom, Jarrah was sitting on her tushie like a veteran of tushie-sitting, waiting patiently for her mummy. But she tore into my arms and buried her head in my hair and demanded that I carry her, just like last year, and sighed against my shoulder, just like the baby who first went to school. On the way to the car, like always, I asked:

"How was preschool today?" As usual, there was no answer. I tried again.

"What did you do today?"

"I ate an egg."

"You ate an egg? Did you do anything before that?"

"Mummy made me an egg. For my lunch."

"Yes, I know."

"I told Barbara that Mummy made me an egg."

"I'm sure she was very impressed."

That's all I got, Dear Readers. When I asked about friends, she glowed and said "Ethan!"--still in denial, apparently. I told her Ethan is not in her class this year--did she notice? She looked troubled, but said nothing.

So that was the first day. I'll keep you posted.

1 comment:

Mary and Paul said...

Jarrah and I both went back to school yesterday!

I am glad she likes school. If only there was a way I could have her in my kindergarten in a few years!

And, we are about to install fridge locks, as well!