She was really excited to be going, as was her sister, who is about to start in Year 2. And yesterday I was also pretty thrilled about the prospect of not having to listen to them wind each other up, squabble, and yell at each other. Today though, I am an emotional wreck. The mixture of freedom and empty nest syndrome is really disorienting.
Until now I have been able to distract myself by concentrating on practical matters. I tried so hard to make Dolly look presentable for her first day. Last night, I even had fleeting thoughts about getting the ironing board out.
Off she proudly tottered, toothpaste splattered all over her sweatshirt, a dress that was far too short (she must have suddenly grown without me noticing) and looking a bit creased.
Laden down with her book bag, PE kit and lunch box, which she insisted on carrying herself, she went and sat herself down on a classroom mat with her name on it. She was looking at the interactive whiteboard as if to say, well come on then, let’s get on with it.
Tom and I were feeling teary and strange, so we went and treated ourselves to a big fry-up and cappuccino.
On the way home Tom wanted to go to the school to see if Dolly was ok, but I managed to stop him – the teachers would think he was nuts, and Dolly wouldn’t thank him for it.
I have spent the last seven years, since my eldest was born, looking after my babies: cooking, crafting, tidying, laughing, crying, lunching, and dragging them round Sainsburys.
So this really does feel like the end of an era, and if there was ever a time that I felt broody, it is right now…
This post was written for BabyCentre.