Seth started preschool today. He attended two days a week last year, but this year he is going four days a week. He is not wearing a diaper. He is in a class of kids who spell their names very creatively, like Gavyn and Corbynne and Jaxin. His name sounds very old fashioned in comparison. I love Seth's name...I didn't choose it, actually. It chose him, or something. He is leaving toddlerhood behind and heading into his preschool years. It makes me both excited and a little sad.
On the way to school, Seth was humming happily, probably because he'd just gotten a cookie for using the bathroom successfully before we left. When I pulled into the preschool parking lot, his humming took on a very solem, anxious tone, and as I parked, I jacked my enthusiasm up to eleven. "Hey Seth! Ready for school?!" He looked at me and shook his head decisively. A moment later, he added "No." verbally, just to drive home his point. I pretended I hadn't heard him and we headed away from the car.
He balked at crossing the parking lot, then he looked up at me and put his hand in mine with this really cautious but trusting look on his face, and we walked inside. He stayed calm all the way into the classroom, where a kid was completely losing it. His mom was basically bolting from the room, and as she walked past me she said "I promise he'll quiet down soon!" I started laughing as soon as she said that and assured her that within thirty seconds no one would even be able to hear her son since Seth would be screaming his head off. She looked relatively relieved.
He was really brave all the way up to his chair. But when I asked him to sit down and showed him the giraffe coloring page that was out on the table, he crumpled. I kissed him and reminded him to try not to go through all three changes of clothes I had sent and that I loved him, and I walked out of the room. He and the boy who was losing it were sort of crying in harmony. At least he wasn't alone in his freak out.
Because of Ava and Jace's school dismissal time, I run about twenty minutes behind picking Seth up, which his preschool director told me she's totally cool with as they're all running around finishing up for the day. So when I pulled up to get him, there was no crowd, no rush. As I parked at the curb just outside the door and got out, I saw his teacher exiting the building.
"He had an awesome day!" She called out to me, and then added that he'd calmed down quickly and been a joy all day long. And she didn't seem like she was lying! I thanked her and headed in to find him sitting at a table with another teacher coloring with markers. He saw me, screamed excitedly, and threw his markers back into the box and jumped up to run over to me, holding up his hand to show me the green horse stamp that was emblazoned there. He was smily and excited and happy.
As we walked out the van and I opened the door, Seth waved excitedly to Ava and Jace. "Hey!" He called out. "Hi!" Ava asked him if he'd had a good day and he shouted "YEAH!"
So he had fun, looked happy, and survived the first day of preschool. And? He only had one accident. I'll take it and call it a win.
He's growing up.
Seth's first day of school 2010: (He was newly two)
And his first day of school 2011 as a three year old: