First Day of Preschool

By: Owen

First Day of Preschool

First Day of Preschool!!!

Owen’s first day of preschool was on August 19th.  The day before was a little hard for me as all the kiddos from his class last year were moving to the afternoon program, which stared on the 18th.  I kept seeing all the first day of school photos and I must admit I wanted to cry.  We decided to keep Owen in the morning class (loosely referred to as the 3 year old class-Owen is 4- for another year).  Although we don’t intend to start Owen in Kindergarten until he is 6 and even though we knew that keeping him in the morning class was the right decision it was still hard to watch him be “passed up” by his peers.

Seeing all the posts and photos on Facebook as well as the travesty that was the first day of school last year had me stressed.  Owen loves his preschool but I was on high alert for a tough day.  I need not have worried.

Last year, leading up to preschool was very scary.  I think it is for any parent but I was so used to Owen getting all his therapies at home and I had at least the illusion of some control in the situation.  Sending him off to a strange place, a place full of people I didn’t know was just so difficult.  As the first day approached I became increasingly upset and worried.  I would call my grandmother and talk to her about how afraid I was for hours at a time.

When the first day of school came around I was not looking forward to it, especially since Owen likes to sleep in, the idea of taking him to class at 9 am seemed like a terrible idea.  And it was awful.  He cried when we got him out of bed.  He cried when we tried to get his first day of school photo.  He cried when we left him in the classroom.  And I cried, big heaving sobs in the parking lot of the school.

I can remember getting myself together, getting into the car and picking up my phone to see cheerful messages from all my friends and family wishing Owen a great first day of school.  So, I did what anybody would do…  I called my sister and started to cry all over again.  In between crying and carrying on she was able to make out my distress about not getting the “first day of school” photo.  You know the one, the kid holds a sheet of paper or a chalkboard, stating that it is the first day of school and the date, followed by what they want to be when they grow up.  I think I said something like, “And I couldn’t even get him to stand still and take a photo, I have to keep seeing all the photos of all the other kids holding their signs and telling the world what they want to be when they grow up but I can’t have that!  I can’t have a picture of Owen holding a sign saying when he grows up he wants to be a fireman!”  My poor sister of course made the mistake of asking, “Does he want to be a fireman?”  To which I distinctly remember yelling into the phone, “I DON’T KNOW HE IS NONVERBAL!”

In my defense, because I know this does not shed me in a very flattering light, the first day of school photo was more of a symbol.  In that moment it was yet another thing that was just a little more difficult, another thing I had to miss out on because my child has special needs and couldn’t just stand there and hold the sign and smile for the camera.  I realize is seems like a small thing.  And it is a small thing…  until he misses the school photos because of a surprise trip to Children’s Hospital after a routine surgery, and he misses cereal box jet pack making because he is sick, and he has to leave the Easter Party because of a melt down and any other number of small things that lead to a big feeling of not belonging.

We did manage to get a few pictures for first day of school though.

There was no way Owen was walking into the strange building, Daddy had to carry him the whole way!

First Day of Preschool.1
Here is Owen going upstairs to his classroom for the first time.  He was just starting to get the hang of going up steps and still needs a good amount of help but he is getting much stronger.

First Day of Preschool.2
Owen was lured into the classroom by one of the aids with puzzles and toys.  I was only permitted to take this photo with the promise of not getting any other kiddos in the picture.

First Day of Preschool.3

When we got home I wrote on the window that it had been the first day of preschool.  As soon as Owen saw that I wrote him a note on the window we needed to go right in and read it together.

First Day of Preschool.4

This year as the first day approached I was a little sad.  It felt like Summer and flown by and I didn’t get to do all the fun things I wanted to with Owen.  I have never been someone who felt sad that Summer was over because I love Fall so much, but now that I have a kiddo in school I hate to see the end of the season.  Though sad, I had none of the fear and worry of last year because I knew that Owen was going to have a great time at school.  In the days leading up to school starting every time we mentioned going to school Owen would get so excited and would make his happy sounds and flap joyfully.

The night before school started I laid in bed wondering if we might just be able to get out photo this year.  I didn’t bother making a fancy sign using some special template I am sure I could have found on Pinterest, if it didn’t work out I didn’t want to have too much time and emotion invested in the photo.  As I thought about the picture I worried that I still didn’t have any idea what Owen wants to be when he grows up.  It is such a simple thing that most parents take for granted.  But then I thought about it and realized, I know exactly what Owen wants to be…

In case you can’t read the sign it says, “My First Day of Preschool.  When I grow up I want to be…  Just like Daddy.”  There is no little boy in the whole world that admires his daddy more than Owen does.  Can I just say that getting this photo was the highlight of my day.

First Day of Preschool.5

We had to get a family “selfie” in front of the building before going inside.  What a difference a year makes, you can just see the joy on his face about going into school!

First Day of Preschool.6
Still all smiles as we go upstairs!

First Day of Preschool.7

This years first day of school was fantastic, like night and day from last year.  I couldn’t wait to get in the car and read all the texts encouraging Owen to have a great day of school.  Of course I had some happy smiling pics to text back in response.  I was so very proud of my Big Guy!  And I can’t wait to cover my walls in all the ne

Leave A Comment