Ava had a blast on her first day. She’s been looking forward to school since she was 2. However, baby Georgia and I found ourselves rather at odd ends on Ava’s first day. In the span of school day, we put together every puzzle in the house, ready 17 books, wore holes in the knees of my pants from riding mommy like a pony, did the grocery shopping, got lunch, fed the ducks at the pond, and still managed to get to the school to pick up Ava about 45 minutes early. Needless to say, we both missed Ava—a lot.
This first day of school marked some monumental transitions for us. First, Ava is no longer a toddler. She’s now Mama’s big girl. I knew she was ready, but she has blown me away with how well she is adjusting. Second, Georgia suddenly realized that she is an entity of her own. When together, Ava has always taken the lead. Now, with Ava in school, Georgia is playing on her own, walking ahead of me at the park, picking the games we play at home. I realize now that I should have given her the opportunity to be on her own earlier, but spilled milk and all that. It hit me, rather hard, that Georgia will be two in October. This moves me to the third transition—mine. I’m no longer the mom to a toddler and a baby, or even two toddlers. My babies aren’t really babies anymore.
From the time I found out we were pregnant with Ava, I’ve been consumed with caring for my babies. Suddenly, for the first time in five years, I’m looking at a little more time to care for me. Granted, I’m thinking that a three-hour bubble bath might be a little much right now, but I have found more time to write. I can’t exactly leave my napping Georgia to go ride my horse cross-country, but I can open my laptop. In the past week, I’ve taken the novel I’m working on from a rough outline and maybe two chapters to a real work in progress. I’m at 16,302 words, and my characters are becoming real people with real problems that need solutions. Then, yesterday, out of nowhere I was able to finish my first children’s story, which is currently being illustrated by a wonderful and amazing friend. (Hopefully, it will be ready to share with you all in a few weeks.)
I was terrified of Ava starting school. I felt that I was losing something precious. Granted, every moment with her is precious, and now I have to share that time with her wonderful teacher and friends, but sometimes sharing isn’t so bad. Now I get to watch Georgia come into her own as an individual. It’s hard as a mom to know when you need to let go and let them grow. Sometimes, it’s even harder to know when you need to grow as a mom, a wife, and an individual. I think we sometimes get so caught up in our roles as wives and moms, or husbands and dads, that we forget that we exist as separate entities as well. Watching Georgia blossom overnight reminded me that change is often a good thing. We fear change, but it is definitely to be embraced. In the seven days, Ava and Georgia have grown exponentially, and maybe this mama has grown a bit, too.