When they asked the little girl where her home was she replied - Where mother is

A Special Memory

Published: September 13, 2006

There are certain times in our lives when we catch ourselves recognizing a special moment in our otherwise, very routine lives. A moment in time that you know will be a very special memory that you will share with your children when they grow up and talk about for years to come. And one of those moments came to me; just the other day and I recognized it as a “memory marker” – it was my son’s first day to Pre-school.

The day started out just like any other day – a hug good morning, a play with his sister and our usual conversations that we have over toast and cereal each morning. But as I sat there listening to his jokes and his chit chat with his sister, I knew this day was different. This day my son would be going to Pre-school for the first time to meet new friends, learn new things and yes, learn to be a bit more independent from me.

I must admit – it was hard for me. I felt myself getting excited and nervous all at the same time, as the afternoon school day grew closer. I packed him some homemade snacks, and laid out his outfit that I picked out for him the night before.

I worried about his outfit and pulled on and off his navy blue shirt –holding out until the very last few minutes before we headed out the door to put back on, so not too get any food on it. (If there is even a cracker within a 6 mile radius of my son, he will find it and be covered with crumbs in a blink of an eye). I combed his hair, and re-combed it, and then tried to comb it again for good measure, that is, until my son howled with impatience at my thoroughness.

We went over in great detail before leaving out the door, what he could expect from his first day. And as I handed him his Superman backpack with his snacks inside, and slipped on his favourite Superman arm band, and tied his shoes, I knew I wanted this moment to last in my mind forever. So I got out my camera and took a few pictures of him in front of our Van. I took along the Camcorder for good measure, to serve as a testimony of that day.

When we arrived, I video taped him talking about how he felt and what he was excited about for his first day. And as we headed into the school hand in hand with his dad, I could see other parents who were taking pictures and discussing the school with their own little ones. It would appear that I wasn’t the only one who recognized this special moment in time.

My son placed his name on the board and did not hesitate when asked if he wanted to go and play with the other children. I looked at my husband and wondered if I should go with my son to help him adjust, but my husband shook his head at me, as though reading my mind.

We sat down together and watched him play from across the room. We filmed him playing cars and interacting with some of the other children and snapped a few more pictures for posterity.

Moms and dads walked around, watching their children, and introducing themselves, smiling nervously. It’s true what they say about coming full circle in our lives. We are here, back at school, it’s just that now, we are living the experience through our children’s eyes.

As my son played, shared, listened and interacted with the other children, I realized that my husband and I had done our jobs at preparing him for this day. He was self assured and flourishing in his new surroundings.

I finally felt myself beginning to relax, and was talking to another mom when I felt a pair of hands suddenly swoop around my neck. It was my son hugging me. “I love you mommy”, he said and kissed me on the cheek, and then as quick as he said it, he was gone; off running and laughing with another child.

Yep – special moments. They come that fast. In the grandeur of that day and all the anticipation that led up to it – that was that moment that stood out to me. And wouldn’t you know it – there was no Camcorder or camera in sight.