On Max's first day of preschool, I had butterflies in my tummy as I went through the wide range of emotions felt by most parents. Would Max like his teachers? Would he play nicely with the other children? Would he think Mommy & Daddy had abandoned him? For sure, we wanted our son to make a great first impression. So we brushed his teeth, shined his sneakers, reminded him that biting is bad and dropped him off.
After my tears dried, I looked around the busy parking lot at the other parents rushing off to start their days and I realized that in the blink of an eye, my Mommy Stopwatch had actually slowed down its pace. For the first time in 2 years, I didn't have to contemplate Max's next snack, diaper change or unforeseen meltdown over blue vs. orange Gatorade. After I got my bearings and re-calibrated my maternal clock, I went to Target, not for anything in particular but just for this seemingly new opportunity to stroll the aisles without anxiously looking at the time on my iPhone every 2 minutes. Later on, I actually sat down in Starbucks and read a few newspaper articles on my mobile device and on my way back to pick up Max, I even carelessly scanned through the radio stations.
Upon my return, Max's teacher briefed me on his first day. "Max had a great day! He slept for the entire nap and ate all of his lunch---on his own. The only thing is...(and she quieted her voice to a whisper)...we can't understand Max when he talks. It sounds like he's speaking another language but we weren't sure because he seems to understand us. He even seems to repeat what we say."
The start of preschool brought about a new wave of many firsts: Free time for Mommy & Daddy, complete sentences and most recently potty training. More importantly, for the first time I realized that he would be looking to me as the English language expert.