I remember the first time that I laid out clothes for you.
They were size Newborn and you were still safely nestled in my womb.
I remember the first time that I dressed you for a big occasion in special clothes, you were two weeks old and they were pictures with Santa.

It boggles my mind that Sunday night, I laid out your clothes for your first day of Kindergarten.
Your navy jumper (size 8! child, you are so tall), your white polo (size 7), your lace edged socks which make your southern belle grandmother go all squishy inside and those darling navy mary janes… let’s not forget the matching bow, which you declared the greatest bow of all time and in the same breath told me to make another one with big white, little navy and a different shaped rhinestone (yes, you are your own woman).


You are supposed to still be nestled into my side, with your warm, sweet, milky breath leaving moist circles on my skin and the butterfly beatings of your heart lulling me to sleep.

Instead, I’m putting your hair in a pony-tail, zipping up your jumper, fastening your bow and making you lunch.. in your custom lunch kit and tucking it into your hot pink matching backpack.

first day of kinder 2

You pose with part joy and part exasperation because “Mom, can we go yet.. Mom, I don’t want to be late.. Mom.. one more and that’s it”

first day of Kinder big girl

Your daddy and I are so proud of you. As we drive you to school it’s a non stop stream of chatter about new friends, learning and your desperate desire for homework (I’m going to video you saying that and in 5 or 7 years.. play it back, be careful what you wish for) .
Your daddy finds the perfect parking spot and you almost vibrate out of your seat with joy and excitement.

You walk just ahead of us, your blonde hair swinging, such confidence and independence in your little body. You are ready, ready to take on the world.. ready to move on to the next big phase of life.. leaving us just a little behind.

There’s no sadness in our hearts or eyes, nor is there trepidation in yours. I was so proud of you as I watched you stride into the classroom and greet your teacher by name, you listened as she gave you instructions and then we watched as you located your cubby, and placed your backpack in it, as your wide, glowing eyes scanned the tables for your name and your exuberance as you found it. I had to hold your daddy back from pointing it out to you, you know your name.. how to spell it, how to write it, how to read it.. you know all the important words and names in your life and you write them effortlessly: Mommy, DAddy, Monkey, Yours, Love, BeBe and Grandpa.. all the ones who’ve mattered thus far. The ones who rotate around your universe.

There were kisses and hugs from us and Monkey and then you waved us off, ready to begin.. ready, eager to learn, to grow, to stretch your wings and fly.

I watched as other parents cried… I could understand it but, I didn’t feel it.

My heart swells with joy and anticipation. There is a whole world out there and you are just dipping your toes into it and I know that you are going to make it yours. Take it on, Princess, enjoy it.. savor it, laugh with it…and know, that we are always walking just those few steps behind you. Supporting you, proud of you and willing to allow you to fall, because you must, and I promise it will hurt us more than you.. but we will always, always.. pick you up again and help you to find that strong, independent walk that led you away from us on your first day of school.

Dear World,

She is no longer all mine.. I give her to you, share your knowledge, your power, your wonder and if you must, and I know you must.. your pain, your heartache and your reality.. because through that.. she will become the amazing woman that she is destined to be, and she will change you, too.
No longer just mine alone… I share her.


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  1. Your lil girl sounds just like mine was today for 2nd grade. All ready and independent to take on the world as a BIG 2nd grader I recall the day she went to kindergarten she responded much like your daughter did and I recall not feeling sad about it, but happy about the situation. Proud may be the correct word. This post is so sweet and the letter at the end is just wonderful!! Good luck to your new little kindergartner!
    .-= Brandy´s last blog ..I’ve Been Lied To … What To Do Next =-.

  2. You might not have cried as you left her on her new adventure, but your post certainly made me cry. She’s growing up too fast, but is SO ready for each new step. I know mentally that this is what we want for her, but emotionally I want to keep her my little girl who names her Bebe as her best friend.

  3. That little Princess is just too cute for words! Look at her all bright and shiny and excited about her new adventure!

    And, Mom… HUGS!!!
    .-= Sugar Jones´s last blog ..10 Things I Learned on Our 2,122 Mile Road Trip =-.

    1. {hugs} Jennifer. That’s when we’ll be here for you, or you’ll write an amazing post that will have us sobbing. You know you will.

  4. Hard to believe, she is growing up so fast. She is such a little independent , well spoken lady and Im not Yannon anymore.

  5. You may not have cried, but I am now! What a wonderful letter to share with your princess when she is older. So glad you both had such a great week!

    My kindergartener started last week, and while she reacted much the way your princess did, I did not. I’m still miss her while she’s at school. However, [with each completed home project] it is getting easier.
    .-= Peaches´s last blog ..A Little Help from My Friends. =-.

  6. I just stumbled across you … and oh, you just made me all teary and nostalgic and very tempted to procreate. Again.
    .-= Arkie Mama´s last blog ..Arkie Mama: Reading nooks =-.

  7. Awww this is beautiful Rachel. She will treasure this post some day.

    She’s an amazing little lady just like her mama! So glad her first day went well.

    p.s. She looks absolutely adorable and just like a little Southern belle (but tough…we know that TRUE Southern women are strong and have an amazing talent to accessorize even when forced to wear school dress code!)

  8. Very touching tribute to her first day of school. (Love the bow.) Hope it went well. =)
    .-= WackyMummy´s last blog ..I’m Glad This Week Is Almost Over =-.

  9. Awww, such an adorable picture and such a sweet little girl. I think my mom has pics somewhere of me in my uniform on my first day of school just like that, in front of the fireplace.

    I’m proud of you for not crying. I know I did – both times – when the big ol’ school bus pulled away with my precious children.

    Last week my “baby girl” started high school…and two days ago my “baby boy” turned 17 and started his junior year. My how time flies.

    Thanks for the peek back into the past – and best wishes for you and your daughter for a great first year of school and thereafter 🙂
    .-= Moon HalloranLeady´s last blog ..My “baby boy” is 17 today =-.

  10. So well said, Rachel! I love it. This post helped me identify what I was feeling about the whole thing- I couldn’t figure out why I didn’t cry. Turns out I was just too proud off him to cry…

    Great post!!
    .-= Danielle´s last blog ..Kindergarten =-.

    1. Dude. BIG love to old school OG blog friends. <3 Reminiscing about school and being in shock that she's started 7th grade this year... and here you are. <3 you

  11. Oh I think I have to stop fidning new blogs this week. It is just too heartwrenching! She looks beautiful and SO mature! Sophie starts the 3’s at pre-school next week and she is so excited, but kindergarten is a big step. I think, like you, I will always be too proud to cry. I will save the tears for her first ballet recital! Glad I found your blog!
    .-= Brittany at Mommy Words´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday: This Gives me an Idea =-.

  12. Wow.

    As a fellow Kindergartner-owner, I totally empathize with this post. and it was SO beautifully written. It’s been a whirlwind backtoschool, huh?

    Really beautiful, Rachel. Just added you to my reader, I look forward to checking in on you.

    Jay (Fellow Texan ;-))
    .-= Jay´s last blog ..About Our Swinging Neighbors. =-.

    1. I can’t believe how grown she is, and how blessed I feel that I have chronicled their lives. I need to go back to more chronicling oxoxox

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