She’s the last baby I’ll ever have, and she’s starting Primary this week. She’s spent the last two years wishing for you as her teacher, and she almost can’t contain her excitement as she packs and re-packs her new mint-coloured backpack printed with little hearts.
When I wrote to my son’s Primary teacher, two Septembers ago, I told Mrs. M how I would be crying on the first day. How I would be fighting back the urge to follow the bus and lurk outside the classroom — sneaking peeks of my baby boy on his first day of school.
But this time, it’s different. You already know my little girl, Ms. B.
You know her sparkling hazel eyes, pointed chin and musical little laugh. You know how she loves to watch those annoying Elsya and Anya videos on YouTube, because your little girl watches them too.
You know her dresses are handmade and her temper is fierce. You know she is funny and friendly and so eager to be good for you.
This little girl is my lucky star. She fills me with light and challenges me in ways no one else does.
You know her because we’ve been a part of the school for two years already. She’s been my helper at the breakfast program, and she’s proudly handed out apple slices and banana halves to the big kids. She’s skipped down the halls and visited you in your classroom.
She’s going to march in on the first day like she owns the place.
As for me, I won’t have the same worries I did two years ago. I know exactly what her classroom looks like because I’ve been there many times. I know what she’ll need to bring every day. I understand the hot lunch tickets and the baggies of money to send for the book fair.
I know the teachers and the principal and the custodian and even a lot of the students. I know what she’ll learn and how much it will amaze me to see her learn to read.
I know how quickly this year is going to fly by, and how you, like dear Mrs. M., will always be adored, appreciated and remembered fondly by all four of us.
I won’t be in the classroom on the first day of school, Ms. B. I won’t be one of the first-time Primary parents hovering nervously at the doorway, taking just a few more pictures before going to cry in the car. I’ll be putting my baby girl on the bus, along with her big brother, and zooming down the hill to get myself a well-deserved pedicure before settling into my work.
It’s not that I won’t miss her, of course. I’ll have butterflies in my stomach all day as I wait for her to get off that bus. I’ll be dying to know who else is in her class, what you said, what she did, if she ate her lunch, if she had trouble putting on her indoor shoes and who she played with on the playground. I’ll be counting down until she gets off the bus, grinning as she throws her tiny body into my arms.
Thank you in advance for taking care of my baby. She’s ready for you, Ms. B.
And I’m ready, too.