Last Day of the First Year

Dear Hayden,

Today, we dropped you off for the last day of kindergarten. I know that I say it all the time, but I just cannot believe how quickly you are growing up. I fully expected you to go to school and make brand new friends this year, with whom you’ll grow over the years. What I didn’t expect is that I would make some brand new friends, with whom I’ll grow over the years. I fully expected you to gain wisdom and learn countless new things. What I didn’t expect is that I would gain wisdom that will carry me into the unknown parts of parenthood that lie ahead of me. I have so enjoyed watching you grow and change this year, Hayden. I love the little baby they placed in my arms on your BIRTHday. I love the little girl you are at this very moment. I love the young person you are becoming.

This year, you learned to handle some of your own business with friends, specifically on the playground. By the end of the year, you had become friends with a girl who, at the beginning of the year, you called, “The Meanest Girl in School” all the time. Your music teacher told me that you sing back to her in perfect pitch, and that you are the loudest, most enthusiastic singer she has. Mrs. Swinford told me that you always share insightful things with her on the playground. All of your worksheet assignments came home with your drawings and doodles on the back — nothing made you happier than to make art this year. You lost 4 teeth during this school year and wore two different pairs of glasses. You and Dad read the first 4 Little House books at bed time this year and one Saturday in March, he helped you learn to ride a bike with no training wheels. You had your first away-from-home slumber party at Allison’s house. You met your kindergarten class friends at a park to trunk-or-treat in your Halloween costume, had them all over to our house to build gingerbread houses for Christmas and went to a Valentine’s Day party at Jack’s to exchange valentines with them. Your brothers missed you terribly when you were gone every day, but when you were home, you were the best sister I’ve ever seen. It was a good year.

You were challenging for your lead teacher — I think she really didn’t know what to do with a student who is as creative and quick as you are. I struggled a lot with that, Hayden. My first instinct was to move you, immediately, when I realized how misunderstood you were. Then I took a step back and realized that you were learning and happy, and so it was okay for you to stay where you were and learn what you needed to learn from this situation. I learned that even at the age of 6 and a half, some things are between you and God — like the way you think and tick and how you are meant to express yourself. This year was also hard for me because I missed you! I learned a lot about the value of prayer — I prayed for you so many times every day — it felt like the only thing to do when what I really wanted to do was drive to your school to hang out with you!

So, here’s to the last day of the first year of school… I’m so grateful that I get to be your mom because I am learning things I never expected.

Love you,

PS – When I picked you up this afternoon, I started crying on the way home, but you didn’t realize it because you were singing along with the radio. About 20 seconds after I started, you said, “Mom, can you do that thing where you cry because I finished another school year?” And then I looked at you and you said, “Oh! You already are!” It was hilarious!

Pictures from this year:

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Pictures from today:



I finished K

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