19 September 2007

two weeks

I can't believe I haven't posted in almost two weeks. Oops! Sometimes life gets in the way of this blogging stuff.

I've decided, though, that it's finally time to write about James' kindergarten experience, now that he's been a kindergartener for two weeks. Of course I have no photos, because it has just never occurred to me to bring the camera to the bus stop, so words will have to suffice.

Are any of you surprised when I say that he totally, completely loves kindergarten? We all love it. And can you guess what his favorite subject is? Keep in mind that my child is half-monkey, sees the entire world as a jungle gym, and hardly ever stops running. Now can you guess? His second favorite subject is less obvious, though not surprising (at least to me): he loves math, which ranks second to gym only because they don't officially have science in kindergarten, though math is pretty close. In third place is the library. (See? He's not 100% Greg. There's a little of me in there too.)

We found out on the first day of school that the little girl who lives two doors down from us is in his kindergarten class. Not only does she have as much energy as James, but she likes Star Wars! What more could a boy ask for? She is blonde and excitable and rambunctious and reminds me of a girl of similar description who James used to be good friends with.

He goes to school for almost three hours in the afternoon, but including the bus, he's gone for almost three and a half hours every day. I initially thought that I'd rather have him in morning kindergarten, so that I could have the mornings with Evan and the afternoons with James while Evan napped, as when he was in preschool, but the afternoon time is working out pretty nicely for me anyway. James leaves, Evan naps, and I have uninterrupted free time. It makes me giddy. I'll have to post another day about what I've been doing with that free time.

Kindergarten has a very different feel from preschool. Mostly for me, I imagine. I was so involved with James' preschool, I knew the teacher and all of the parents, I assisted there on a regular basis, I dropped him off and picked him up there and knew the daily routine and basically knew exactly what he was doing in his time away from me. He was gone, but it didn't feel like he was that far away.

And kindergarten? All of a sudden there are hours of my son's life about which I know virtually nothing. And with James, sometimes it's like pulling teeth to get the details. I've heard some songs, he's brought home a couple of worksheets, I've heard details here and there, but I still feel like I am missing out on a lot. For someone who's physically been with the kid almost 24/7 for almost 6 years, it's a weird feeling to watch him embarking on his own life, and knowing that I will never get that closeness back. He'll only grow further and further away from here on out.

Not that that's a bad thing. It's fascinating to watch him develop into an independent person, to find out which details he's eager to tell me and which I have to pry out of him, to see him becoming more confident, more sure of himself (I hadn't thought that was possible, but apparently there was room to grow even for James). One of the best parts of parenting has been seeing the results of all my labor, and realizing that this person, this wonderful child he's become, was really worth all of the sleepless nights and endless diapers and emotional meltdowns (both his and mine).

Today, two weeks into kindergarten, he ran ahead of me to the bus, and climbed aboard without a hug, without a wave, without a backwards glance. And I smiled to see him go, because that is James: diving into everything headfirst, with confidence and excitement, and I love him for it.


ren said...

you're so cute.

Jessica said...

So sweet...I remember some of the same feelings. After nursery school where Jodi gave me a run-down of every significant detail, I was at a loss when K would come home with nothing but a worksheet to give me any clue to her day.

Glad James has found a friend into Star Wars. I have to let K watch that.

Melissa said...

What a good Mom for loving him who he is. A rarity.