Thursday, June 9, 2011

Here’s to the Next Chapter – May the Light Always Shine Bright

Before I get going on this post, I wanted to share with you a link for the post I did at Band Back Together. I am very proud of this post, and this is a fantastic website. Please take some time to check it out.

Also, I will be writing a post on recharging batteries. This post includes a survey I created over at The Skinny Scoop. Please check it out. I would love your feedback.

Ok, now down to business.

In the past three weeks, The Babes have hit quite a few milestones over here. Thomas got his first official summer haircut. Last summer, I didn’t have to cut it so short because it wasn’t as thick. But I could see the sweat mixed with sunblock dripping from his forehead and knew I had to do it. I am very partial to the longer, messier look, but it’s hotter than hell out here, so what is one to do? Thankfully, my brother was able to cut it short without looking, well, how I can say this, boring bowl cut.

Pretty damn cute, if you ask me! 

It kind of broke my heart a bit because he looked so much older. And even though I usually am not the mournful type because leaving a phase (especially a baby phase) means something much more fun and exciting. But this time was different.

I think this might have something to do with it.

As you know, Marie turned five last month. Which was pretty big in and of itself. And then two weeks later, she *takes a deep breath* lost her first tooth. It went from kind of loose to totally ready to fall it so quickly. Next thing I know, Harrington gave it one little twisty-turn and out it came. She looked like a character from Twilight as the blood came spilling out all over her other teeth. Ick.

"Holy shit!  What just happened!
Why does Mommy look like she's going to pass out?
And that rumor about the Tooth Fairy bringin $5 for
the first tooth better be true."

I was totally not ready for that. Not just the blood, but how it changed her face. It also changed how she talked. It forced me to look at her differently. She’s not the little two year old we took to Myrtle Beach with her chubby legs and wispy hair, barely able to put into pigtails. She’s not even the three year old who was not so sure of the play structure at the park.

No, she’s a five year old, who is losing her baby teeth to make room for the *adult* teeth.

As if that wasn’t enough, she graduated from preschool this week. And in the fall she will be going to Kindergarten.

"Big crowds?  Lots of attention?
This is so not my scene.  So much so
I could care less about the chocolate fountain.
Get. Me. Out. Of. Here. Now."

I am not usually that mom that’s all sad about moving on to the next phase. I was relieved when I was done with nursing her after ten lllooooonnnngggg months (and was happy not to have wash bottles anymore for Thomas). I joyfully said good bye to diapers (which, please, Thomas, please let’s start giving this potty thing a *real* try). I was excited when she started preschool.

I was even OK with her giving up her naps because we had more flexibility to do more fun stuff, go on more adventures.

But there is something about starting Kindergarten that just yanks at my heart strings. Maybe I look at through this lens of my youth. I always felt that I didn’t quite fit in and had a hard time making friends. I fear for the bullying that is out of control.

I’m afraid that Marie will loose that light in her eyes. The one that shines from the inside out because she’s totally excited about life and not afraid to be herself. Before Hannah Montana and all the other bullshit shows out there that tell her what “cool” is.

This process of letting go is so very bittersweet. (And if you saw my status on Facebook or Twitter, it’s like 60% Ghirardelli Bittersweet Chocolate Chips . . . which has been my chosen method of self-soothing. Well, that and chocolate ice cream). (No judging . . . whatever works, right?) (Right?!)

As I said earlier, there will be new adventures to be had. I couldn’t have done Chicago and enjoyed all the sights we saw if Marie was still a baby. Some of my greatest childhood memories are going on similar trips and adventures. And I am looking forward to going on adventures with The Babes.

"I have found Heaven.  It's here in Chicago.
In the Ghirardelli Chocolate Shop. Mommy and Nana
are right.  Everything is better with ice cream."

One chapter is definitely closed.

A new one is definitely opened.

And no matter what, I will try to keep that light bright and shiny.


Amy said...

Oh bless your heart! That is quite a lot of change in such a small amount of time! I think I would have a little sadness along with the excitement of things to come. It's only natural. Let me leave you with this....whenever you are missing your babes as...well....babes....just remember all the sleep deprivation. At least you're sleeping;)

P.S. That picture of Marie losing her tooth is epic!! And also...they start to lose teeth at 5???? OY, they grow up so fast;(

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Thanks, Amy. You are so right about the sleep!!

I guess it's totally normal to loose teeth at 5. I thought it was more like 6. *sigh*

Wendi said...

I was really shaken up when my kids left preschool for real school, but you'll adjust. It's actually a lot of fun to see them really start learning and doing big kid things.

And your son's haircut is too adorable!

Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress said...

The older Cal gets, the more I have moments where I feel like one chapter is closing and another one is opening. Often, I really don't feel ready for the new chapter and I really, really want the old chapter back. Then, Cal surprises me with some new insight or some new discovery, and I take a minute to remind myself that "this is good too."

sounds like a lot of wonderful milestones in such a short amount of time!

Anonymous said...

I love that picture of her staring at that ice cream, lol. That's how I look at ice cream these days too!

I loved kindergarten. I had so much fun and lots of friends...maybe Marie will have that same experience. Maybe it will be wonderful for her :)

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Wendi, that's what I keep reminding myself. Thanks!

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Elizabeth, I know! I try and focus on the positives of this new chapter we are entering!

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Brittany, you are so right. It's easy to think she is going to have the same life experiences as me, but the truth of the matter is, that she is her own person and will have her own experiences. Thanks for the reminder!

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