Something happened today that may seem like nothing, but it was huge. Well technically, it was nothing, and that my friends, was the beauty of it.
Let me explain myself – for the six months, whenever I’ve dropped Big Monkey off at preschool, there has always been tears. They’ve ranged from mild sniffling to clinging-round-my-leg-begging-me-not-to-leave style sobs. It’s been heartbreaking and quite frankly, emotionally exhausting. I know he calms down and is fine after I’ve left, but he just hates the goodbye.
So I’ve spent the last six months feeling like a wretched mother for continually abandoning her son at the evil institution (which is actually lovely, by the way). I’d convinced myself that this is just how it would be and I may as well prepare myself for next September, when he starts school and I’ll be that parent with the child that screams and sobs at the school gates for the duration of the first term. The one that all the other mums look at with sympathetic eyes, but secretly think “thank god that’s not me.” My poor Big Monkey…what will we do?
And then this morning happened. We got to preschool as normal, after having the ritual “I don’t want to go to preschool” – “of course you do, it’ll be fun” conversation. We put his bag and coat on the peg and then I turned around and braced myself for his bereft little face. Except he wasn’t there. The bereft little face had made its way over to the carpet area for registration and was sitting there chatting to a boy with a Spiderman jumper on.
I think I stood there dumbfounded for a few seconds, before composing myself, walking over and kissing him goodbye before he changed his mind and the tears started to flow. He was so engrossed in conversation all-things-superhero-related, that he almost batted me away and just about mumbled goodbye.
As I reached the door I turned and waved, he half raised his hand in acknowledgement and that was it. No tears, no calling out for me, no nothing. And I’ve never been so happy to have nothing.
I did a small celebratory dance to myself in the car park, which was witnessed by another nursery mother – which in turn cemented my reputation from mother-of-the-one-that-always-cries to mother-who’s-a-bit-weird – but hey, I’ll take that any day. Thanks for nothing, nothing.