There are a few times in life when you just know things are going to change. Some for the good – some for the bad – and some just because it has to.
My happier moments include my wedding day and the day of my daughter’s birth. Recently I have chalked up another experience to my list: kindergarten registration.
I wouldn’t particularly classify this experience as a good experience, but more like a “have to” kinda thing. It’s scary to see my baby, who is not so much of a baby anymore, go off into this big ol’ world.
She appears to be more than ready, insisting she ride the school bus … every day. She even asks each morning if she can go to “big school” instead of to her beloved babysitter, Larinda DeSpain … and that says a lot.
However, I thought her attitude would change when we actually went to the school for registration. We got out of “daddy’s truck” and wouldn’t ya know it, she was elated! Curls bouncing full force, cheesy grin and the confidence of a lion – my baby girl was fearless.
I was sad. She was happy. In we went.
The ladies at the front desk were nice and for a moment, she seemed shy when they asked her name. That quickly changed though as she belted out “Heaven Leigh Carpenter” with all the country twang possible (where she got that from I’ll never know).
My husband and I followed directions, going from station to station turning in our paperwork. Heaven followed leisurely behind, mingling, collecting “goodies” and making herself known.
This was “her school,” she insisted. I smiled and nodded, holding back tears.
We finished up fairly quickly and as we left, she said, “Mommy and Daddy you know what?” My husband and I in unison said “What?” Her reply was “You’re the best.”
I’d like to think she will mean that for years to come, but we all know things change with time.
I’m not sure when it happened, the switch between her toddler years and the start of childhood, but it sure went quick.
I try to replay in my head where time went but it’s impossible to track down a specific source.
I know I’ve spent too much time on the housework that can wait, too much time in front of the computer and too much time fussing at her for mistakes. Too much time.
It’s funny how an event like this made me wake up to reality. She’s just a kid. A good-hearted, fun, loving and sassy kid.
She makes mistakes, talks back, pushes my buttons and drives me crazy in the same instance that she makes me smile with a simple kiss.
I may not be able to keep her little for long but she will always be my baby – the baby that deserves me to be “the best.”