Stephanie's Blog


First day of Kindergarten

Just 15 minutes ago I dropped off my daughter at school for her first day of Kindergarten. She was one of the ones who went inside holding hands with an old preschool friend, no tears at all. Behind her was a sweet little girl who's first day truly was her first day at the big school, since she hadn't attended preschool before. She clung to her mother and was the last to enter the building following a long trail of 5 year old children all attending their first day of Kindergarten.

A milestone. I thought.

But was it a milestone for my daughter as much as for me?

I left this morning with wobbly knees and welling up tears followed by a happy little smile. Happy that my daughter was able to get over the separation anxiety she'd had the first four years of her life. Happy that she was proud to be a Kindergartener. Happy that she was such a sweet and kind friend to her classmates.

Then I remembered how I'd felt on my first day of Kindergarten. I was one of those children much like that teary little girl, afraid to go and reluctantly walked into the school building with a hole in my heart created by the feeling of loss as though my mother had deserted me by sending me to that terrible place. I was afraid of my teacher who would put her hands on the children's shoulders and rattle them up if they misbehaved. I

All these emotions came before me this morning as I chose not to go inside for "Parent Tea" with all the other parents as they do on the first day of the schoolyear. I suppose I could have gone in to celebrate and chat with the other moms but I didn't. I wanted to remember more about that day 28 years ago. The first day of Kindergarten is a milestone for everyone. For me, because I don't remember the details of that day, I was able to connect to that little girl who was tearfully led into the building. I remember what that first day felt like, and so many mornings after that.

Call me emotional but I think I've crossed a milestone today. I wanted to write about it because I know so many other parents are experiencing these emotions this week as their son or daughter begin their first day of Kindergarten, or preschool, or high school or college. So this is what it's like to be a parent!

Comment balloon 7 commentsStephanie Jacques • August 25 2009 08:04AM


Stephanie...kudos to you.  This year, I have one in 5th grade, 3rd grade, 1rst grade, pre-school and a 2 year old who doesn't even know what school is.  I'm so sad that I'm taking my oldest 3 to school tomorrow.  It really bums me out.  I love the summer that we had.  Just so awesome.  I'm bumming.  Thanks for being tough....for me!

Posted by Larry Bettag, Vice-President of National Production (Cherry Creek Mortgage Illinois Residential Mortgage License LMB #0005759 Cherry Creek Mortgage NMLS #: 3001) about 11 years ago

Stephanie, my kids start tomorrow and I have a kindergartener as well, and she is one of my shy ones, so I am hoping that my 1st grader this year who was a clinger last year will be able to be the big sister and help her.  Such an unbelieveable time, yet we ask where the time went.

Posted by Dennis Chanski about 11 years ago

I remember my first day, and I was like your daughter. I just walked in, no worries.  My daughter is only 21 months, but she changed teachers on Monday and moved up to a bigger class.  The school did a two week transition where the new teacher would be in their class, and they would play in the new room for a while each day, so the transition would be easy.  I couldn't believe she was already in the potty-training room, but she just smiles at me and says, "Goodbye, Mommy" and pushes me out the door.  So grown up!

Posted by Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator (Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - about 11 years ago

Sweet memories. Thanks for responding.

Posted by Stephanie Jacques, Stephanie Jacques Kleine (Better Homes and Gardens The Masiello Group) about 11 years ago


I took my youngest to 5th grade on Monday and thought "this is the last time that it will be a first day for any of my kids in grade school", I had to leave then.

Posted by Sheila Moran,, RE/MAX Access, 210-32 (RE/MAX Access (Garden Ridge, San Antonio, New Braunfels)) about 11 years ago

My son will start Kindergarten next year. I think I'll be the one crying with seperation anxiety, not my son.  I felt so miserable and used to call every hour, when I was working full time ( I mean 9 to 5 job ) and hired a nanny. I couldn't do it anymore , so quit that and came here and enjoying every minute of it, while building my business.

Posted by Suma Kakani (Northern IL Realtor - Keller Williams Success Realty) about 11 years ago

We take on so much guilt as parents that we really shouldn't impose on ourselves. They're at school, they're going to be ok, and they need to be away from us to learn how to function on their own.

I have to remind myself of this often:)

Posted by Stephanie Jacques, Stephanie Jacques Kleine (Better Homes and Gardens The Masiello Group) about 11 years ago

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