Ellie went off to Kindergarten today. Wow. What a beginning! I woke up to an alarm to the first time in months, perhaps a year. I went in, woke her up, and she jumped out of bed, totally ready to face the day. She was so excited to get dressed and ready for the bus. We got her hair combed and pretty, and breakfast commenced. It was a nice 30 minutes of just her and I, reminiscing about life and things she has done. She kept asking me, Mama, how much time do we have until the bus is here? (She couldn't wait) Inside I was a mess, just trying to hold myself together. We walked hand in hand out to the bus stop, before taking a couple of very glowy and sweet photos on our porch. We greeted our neighbors who assured me that they would keep a close eye on Ellie on the bus. We took a couple of photos, and 5 minutes later, the bus arrived, she gave me a couple of great big hugs, and before you could say 'off to kindergarten' the bus was driving down our block. I wanted to call out, 'wait, I need just one more hug', but instead I just cried as my sweet first child drove off to school. I walked back to my house unsure of what to do next. I crawled back in bed, but was unable to sleep. I downloaded my camera's photos and sniffed through the darling images of my sweet girl, hoping she was excited and ready for her first big day.
Soon after this, Sophia came in to find me, asking where Ellie was, and we both had a few tears together about missing our big sister. I then perked up and told her it was time to get ready for her friend's birthday party, and that really helped to get the mood back on track. Sophia ate breakfast, I took a shower, baby brother woke up, he ate, we headed out for the party. It was the best way to spend the morning, I was able to see good friends, Sophia was able to play with her favorite girls.
Later this afternoon Chris, Sophia and I marched back out to the bus stop and waited for the bus. I kept looking around the corner for it to show, and finally (10 minutes late) it arrived. Ellie bounded out, ran right for me and gave me the most amazing hug. I will never forget it! She was so happy! We walked hand in hand back to the house, and for the first time all day I realized that I was going to survive kindergarten.