Happy New Year everyone!
It was only 12 short months ago that Athos started his primary school journey, and here I am again, round the corner from seeing Porthos off to Primary One.
I find myself feeling much the same way as the last time. It’s now 11pm and we have to be up by 6am so the wisest thing to do would be to sleep (and God knows I need it).
Yet I am sitting up in bed, unable to settle, feeling bereft, recalling random moments – how he got such a laugh out of mimicking my response to cockroaches (EEEEEEEK!), the pink misshapen heart he made me for Mothers’ Day, the way he picks up tunes and sings snatches of them all day long – and wondering how he is going to hold up tomorrow.
When I put Porthos to bed earlier this evening, I asked how he was feeling. “A little excited,” he said.
I was glad. Some years back when he started kindergarten, he held the school record for the child who cried the longest before settling down – 10 whole weeks. The first day he got to school without tears, the teachers actually stood in a row and applauded, and the principal said to me, “We were so happy to finally see him arrive at school with a smile on his face!”
I’ve spent the past few days psyching Porthos up for school in various little ways. We carved out personal shelfspace for him, let him decorate some magazine holders in his favourite colours for his schoolbooks, and brought him shopping for a new schoolbag, water bottle, pencil case and wallet.
Sitting at the door of our home now: two pairs of Bata socks and shoes, two schoolbags, two sets of school uniforms. And a mother’s heart waiting, wondering, praying.