Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The Big Day

This morning, my little girl Bella got on the big yellow school bus to go to all-day Kindergarten. She was a bit nervous last night and had a lot of questions and concerns, but finally dropped off. When she awoke this morning, she was ready and all business. Got dressed, made her bed, had some breakfast, packed up her backpack, and went out to the curb with all of the other neighborhood kids. She was calm and professional about the whole thing.

When the bus finally arrived at 8:45, one neighbor girl held Bella's hand to get on the bus, and Jenny sat right next to her for the ride. We almost dislocated our shoulders with all the waving... and at the end, Isaac stood among all of the adults and started asking about where's Bella? Where's JenJen? He looked a bit worried.

I ran off to work, where there are other big goings on which are taking some of my brainprocessing cycles... and I got the call at 2pm that Pamela had decided that today is D-Day for Isaac's bottles.

Isaac remains a tentative eater on the best of days: We've seen him shovel down a whole plate of pasta, or a full slice of pizza, only to turn his nose up at the same dish a dozen more times. He's getting better about trying foods, but 90% of his calories are still coming in bottle form. It's time to move him along.

So a compromise is to offer formula in a sippycup... which he thinks is flat out ridiculous and is not standing for. Naptime today was 45 minutes of writing and sobbing until passing out. At dinner, he actually made a bit of an effort to eat (a taco shell, a spoon of meat, a spoon of applesauce, and a half bagel with cream cheese... across a 2 hour period). For night time, he again refused the sippybottle, and had to be rocked to sleep.

It's as if he's saying "look, if we're losing the bottle, let's go all the way. Stick with it, people". I'm fully expecting a few very sad wake-ups tonight. But my gut feel is that this may only be a couple of days of misery before he figures it out and directs his appetite to the bounty we provide to him.

Ok, back to Bella: the Bus came home at 4:15, Bella marched right off, with a huge smile. We had prepared her favorite meal, taco night. As we munched, she was talking a MILE a MINUTE about her day, and how awesome school is, and who she met, and everything. She was in seventh heaven, that kid. Of course, when we tried to get her to tell anyone ELSE about her day, she clammed right up... so we're grateful for the outpouring, and can only hope that she continues to share her stories. After dinner, she got to go play for an hour with Jenny, which was likely a perfect capper to her day.

As we tucked her in for bed, I asked if she knew what she gets to do tomorrow: "Go to SCHOOL! YAY!!!!" That girl is ready for school and excited. Knowing that made it much easier to see her off this morning: We really didn't have tears - we were more proud than anything.

Tonight as she dropped off, Isaac was having his trouble with the no-bottle situation, and Bella started crying: Turns out this whole bottle thing is reminding her of the trauma of when the "Pacifier Fairy" came and took all of her pacifiers when she turned 3. She was so incredibly sad back then, because she was the ultimate Pacifier addict. Isaac has no use for those things - never has - but she was identifying with him. She's a wonderful big sister.

In our lives, things are slowly starting to move back to normalcy: No houseguests, kids starting school (Isaac starts his ECFE next week), the Rev Duties complete, vacations done... Now it's my turn to upend things: This weekend I'm taking a 3 day intensive course for my fitness instruction, so I'll be gone all day all weekend... then I have a 2 night business trip this week coming up, then 4 nights away then next week to Madison for "the other big conference". After that, it should be more predictable.

Keep those cards and letters coming...

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