When we arrived yesterday at Kai's new school he immediately made a beeline for his mates and I found company in my fellow mums who were grouped together wearing sunnies in quiet camaraderie.
Together we all nervously watched on as our sons and daughters milled around, saying hello to familiar faces, high fiving mates, self consciously checking each other out in the uniforms and talking at a million miles an hour about what the day would bring.
There was definitely comfort to be found in numbers and it was clear that those who were starting with their friends, found the whole experience less confronting. As a parent you couldn't help but feel for the kids who were literally meeting everyone for the first time. I had already talked to Kai about keeping an eye out for those who seemed to be on their own and making a point of taking the time to say hello and providing a friendly face, but when I spied a few of the lone starters for myself I was silently sending them strength and courage. Once upon a time that was me... the new kid who on day 1 of high school knew no one, so I know how daunting it must have been for them.
I surprised myself yesterday morning with my semi controlled emotions. OK so my eyes got a little leaky when I saw him for the first time in full uniform, but I almost managed to hold it together for the whole morning.
I had prepared myself that Kai would be feeling nervous but keen to prove otherwise by choosing to hang with his mates rather than waiting with me. I was totally OK with that and told myself that as long as he waved goodbye to me before he left, I could cope with this new found independence.
What I didn't expect when the time came for them to file into the hall, was for him to come and hug me and tell me he loved me and give me a proper old familiar goodbye. That's when I started to cry behind the safety of my sunnies.
In that one moment I saw through the disguise of an eager new high school kid and I caught a glimpse of my little boy. He will always be my little boy, even when he is 30 and with kids of his own. Aren't they always?
Surprisingly enough today was tougher. Who would have thought that day 2 would be more gut wrenching than day 1?
I don't know if it was the fact that today they were on their own without us parents or if it was the sight of him, all crispy and new walking into school by himself among a sea of others, both old hands and shirt tucked in new crispies... but as I drove away my stomach did somersaults and once again my leaky eyes went into overdrive.
After I dropped my younger two off for school I made my way home to a quiet house. I drank my hot cuppa whilst it was still hot and now I am sitting here watching the clock and desperately willing the hours to go by until the front door will slam shut and herald his arrival home.
I want to know everything. Like who did he talk to? Who did he eat lunch with? Who's in his class? Was everyone friendly? I want to know.... I NEED to know and suddenly I am back 7 years ago. I am the mum of a new Kindy kid who is desperate for a recount of every minute of her child's day.
My poor son.
How did you guys go? Were there any tears with starting or heading back to school?
Can you remember you 1st Day of High School?