In 2009 my oldest son was preparing for kindergarten and along with the anticipation and excitement (and adjustments), came a whole rush of emotions for mama. A whole rush of anxiety and second-guesses. Here are the words scrawled into my sketchbook journal, as I was creating Promise in the studio:
I’ve loved the concept of the mother protecting her baby with her body, but as I worked on this painting, the more it became about the mother protecting the older child, vs. protecting the baby. But watching over the school age child as he goes out into the world, beginning his school years ~ tucked into the day to day, 6-hours-a-day, 5-days-a-week schedule.
He is removed from his family and his mama, and becomes vulnerable to all that is out there.
When I watch my six year old sleep, I sometimes cry ~ wondering the thoughts that he thinks – he is so smart. I wonder if inside he is confused, wondering how I could have always been there, and then all of the sudden send him off for six hours a day. He is a bright star, a sensitive, emotional, talented and change-the-world kind of boy.
What does “getting used to” & “the way-it-is” mean? As our children start to see us less and less do they start to wonder more and more about our priorities?
Here is a promise I silently make to my sleeping and growing child: I promise to everyday look into your face ~ into your eyes ~ to read your story. To take each day 15 minutes at a time and never assume that all is well unless you tell me it is so. I promise to listen, I promise to share. I promise to be there for you as we discover your route into this world of possibilities.
Flash forward 4 years and my sweet boy is almost 10. He does well at school but I stand behind all the words written above. I still do not know if I’m doing the right things, I still do not know if I should be helping him “get used to the way things are”.
What are your thoughts on this? This burning question of mine has been always present, always burning. Do you anticipate the day your little one will head off to school? Or do you remember those days when you were suddenly watching them walk away, getting bigger and bigger and bigger?
Thank you for sharing your love!
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Have a great day,
Love & Sincerely, Katie