The final preschool check has been signed and hand-delivered. For the better part of eight years, we have been paying that bill. We’ve been packing small lunches, stuffing in extra outfits, kissing tearful goodbye faces and watching enormous backpacks swallow our small children as they carried themselves to school.

The 25th of May marks the end of this phase in our house. The third, and final, preschooler will be done, and she will FINALLY move into the big kids’ school next year.

I know they’ll do that darned cute end-of-year program, and I’ll cry like I did at her older brother and sister’s presentations. I fear that this year will be worst of all.

I will cry harder than is probably appropriate, because… I am sad. I am sad my kids have grown this fast. I am sad the phase of graham cracker snacks and adorable group prayer time is over. I am sad our backward-ballcap-wearing-earphone-plugged-eleven-year old son has moved so incredibly fast past his last preschool day. I am sad our Middle Sprout has already bloomed to be interested in babysitting and boys. And Little Sprout…well, I am sad she is headed their direction.

I like that right now she can flit from a beautiful princess to an evil queen in the matter of seconds.

I like that she hugs and kisses me for no reason except to tell me she loves me. I love that she sings made-up songs to herself as she runs through a playground.

I love that she is home a good part of the week, and I can keep her protected from all the pain and heartache that waits for her further down her path. I am seasoned enough to know parts of what awaits her.

Right now she is the smiling barefoot kid who stops long enough to contemplate puddle ripples. But like that fluid water, she is moving further out from the center we’ve provided for her…and there is nothing I can do about it.

So, even though I started this post with the intention of highlighting some of the funny things I’ve learned in preschool over the last eight years, I was forced to deal with this sadness. Maybe if I get out some of my tears now…I won’t be a blubbering idiot at the last day.

I’ll come back to What I Learned in Preschool in my next installment.

18 thoughts on “3,2,1…Done

  1. Meagan last year was my last preschool year. I was so sad!!! And, I can’t belive that my last little guy is going to be done with kindergarten in a few weeks! Nooo! Where in the heck did the time go!! It is exciting for them and for me, this year has been wonderful for me but I miss my babies!! Thanks for the great post!

    • Thanks for the reminder that there will be many good times ahead for me now that all three kids will be in school full time…but it still makes me sad that time is unstoppable! MMF

  2. OH I feel for you, Meagan! That pre-school grad seems like just yesterday to me! I have 2 grads to attend this June 29th – one for my 5th grader heading off to middle school and one for my 8th grader heading off to high school to join is brother… sniff sniff. I have 12 years of experience with this primary school! Pass the tissue! I can also relate to the pain and heartache as I am smack dab in the middle of it all…. I can’t wait to read ‘What I Learned in Preschool’ as just the title has inspired me to write a ‘what I learned in grade school’ – facing middle school in my middle age 😦

    • I would be interested in what you learn from grade school too. There is still so much growing going on around here…and it’s not just for my kids! Here is a tissue! It does make it easier to not be the only one in the room crying… MMF

  3. Permission to feel is one of the kindest gifts we can give ourselves. Cry, sweet mama. Feel it all. And know we’re here, reading you with tears of our own. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Brynne…
      Shared tears are so much better than denying them or sitting in my shower alone. You always have just the right things to say, Brynne. Thanks for that! MMF

  4. Meagan, your little princes is formidable–a force to be reckoned with! OMG, she’s so cute! I was smiling from ear to ear as I saw her dancing and movements with the cape! And the transformation from princess to evil queen? Priceless. I feel your pain. When the Son left preschool to go to kindergarten, he didn’t shed a tear. Instead, I did it for him–bucketfuls. He’ll be 20 this year and I’m still crying! 🙂

    • Oh Bella…you have NO idea how formidable I think she is. She is such a mixed bag of sugar and spice and then runs in the room with a puppy-dog tail that she tore off of a stuffed animal. She is going to keep us guessing for sure, and I’m going to miss total access to the wonder of her. I guess I need to brace myself to just keep crying…forever…MMF

  5. It goes so fast, doesn’t it, Meagan? My daughter has one more year of middle school and we moms are already shedding tears, just thinking about our kids’ graduation after 8th grade next year. Many of our kids have been together since kindergarten and will start the process of going off their separate ways very soon. I still miss preschool, the endless tea parties with my daughter’s stuffed animal friends, reading bedtime stories together, etc.

    • It does go fast, and it is hard to navigate that perilous place between past and future, all the while being mindful of the present. I can hardly imagine 8th grade, but with the passing of every milestone I cannot help but to consider it. Thanks for the images of your daughters and their play time…I am off to tea party now! MMF

  6. I’m getting close the end of my boys pre-school days too and it scares me! They are growing up so fast, I can hardly believe it’s real. But it’s true that each stage of growth has its own wonder and beauty. I just wish they wouldn’t pass so quickly!!

    • That’s the wish for sure…that it wouldn’t go so quickly. That is the pull and push always: I cannot wait until they….and I miss so much that they don’t anymore. MMF

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