Ok, if I'm honest, I was mostly scared.
We had so many first days with Liam that didn't go well. I dreaded that moment of having to peel a fearful child off my leg and run out the door. Never an experience I've enjoyed (and one I've had with Finn at YMCA childcare several times...). I was afraid he would cry, want me to stay, have a bad day, or worse - not want to go back.
I've been looking forward to this type of a schedule for a while now. Finn in preschool two days a week so I could actually do something resembling homeschool with Liam, a place where Finn would have his own friends and activities where he wasn't just Liam's little brother, and time for the introverts in the house to retreat to our respected corners and recharge our batteries.
If school didn't go well for Finn, then what?
Fortunately, I doesn't look like we'll have to find out.
His first day was flawless. We had to wake him up because our flight had gotten in kind of late the night before and we still had to head out for some dinner and figure out where to sleep (we had a flea issue while we were gone - long story - so all of our bedding, etc was in plastic bags, flea free but needing a wash). By the time we got in bed (with no pillows...) and read stories, the jet lag kicked in. It was one of those nights you just want to end. And when it finally did, we had to haul ass to get Finn to school.
Fortunately from the get-go, his attitude was fantastic. He came down the hall, all dressed and ready to eat breakfast and said, "I'm going to play all day today! And learn some stuff, too." He was all smiles and positivity. Even when he expressed a bit of first day jitters, he didn't get derailed. He seemed to know that was just part of doing something new. What a kid.
When we got to school, we immediately saw friends which always helps. Then we went up to his classroom and he sat right down at the table with his class and started working on a shape gluing project.
"Will you stay with me for a little bit?" he asked quietly.
"Of course, buddy," I said, crossing my fingers. So I stayed nearby and chatted with his teacher, checking in now and then to see how he was doing.
"I'm going to go in a bit, okay?"
"I'll come back after class to get you."
And then, just like that, I gave him a squeeze, said goodbye and left. I went home and spend some quality time with Liam and Finn spent the next five hours playing and learning some stuff.
When Liam and I picked him up, he was so sweet. Excited to see us but mostly just stoked at what a great day he'd had. He made an applesauce cake to bring home (delish), made some new friends (his teacher said he's a bit of a ladies man...), rested quietly during nap time and had an "awesome" day.
I am so happy for our little guy. And for the rest of us! Bill and I kept looking at each other yesterday afternoon like, "Is this just what it's like for most people?!" Because it was so not like that with Liam (it is now but preschool was a different story). It felt fantastic. Knowing your kids can go forth and have an awesome time without you has to be one of the best feelings in the world. I'm so thankful we all got to experience it.