Yeah, it's strange to admit it but I guess I'm starting to feel nervous about Maya going off to school. On the surface I'm excited for her new adventure. I know it will be good for her socially and help her excel. I feel as though I've been slacking on the teaching department. She needs this jump start for sure. There are so many pros to her going to school...and then deep down (it is starting to come to the surface) I am afraid.
I'm sure all moms go through this, having to let go of their little birds. There are so many things that go through my mind. Things that I would have never thought of before. Like the fact that she could get hurt. She could get pushed around, since she is small for her age and she is still unsteady on her feet.
This will be the first time I am leaving my child in someone else's care, a stranger in a way, not at my home where I can basically control the setting. I hate to admit it but as much as I've tried I have been one of those mom's who have shadowed their child. I think most of the time I've had to do such things to ensure that my daughter did not bite someone or pull their hair. The fact that she doesn't speak and only uses signs (now less and less) worries me the most. How will she communicate? How will she be able to defend herself or ask for something she wants. When I think about this I just shake my head. What the hell did I get myself into?! I knew motherhood would be hard but I hate this feeling that I will not be able to protect my child.
All the more so, this brings up the feelings about her having Down Syndrome. I try not to think much about it because she has done so well. But now it's in the forefront. She struggles more in interacting with the other kids, she doesn't always understand what is going on and gets frustrated...she can't tell them what she is thinking. I don't want to think about the future because what matters is now, but there are fears I have for my daughter. I worry about her future struggles. It makes me sad.
Then on the flip side I say to myself, it's only preschool! It's only going to be 2 1/2 hours for four days a week. it's not like she will be gone for long. And I know Maya does very well in a class setting, she doesn't mind getting instruction from a teacher. She enjoys story time and she loves it when we go to music and gym class. I know this will be good. And in the end it is what it is. I have a daughter with Down Syndrome and this is my life. This is her life. We are very blessed to be in a good place. She is lucky to have this opportunity to go to preschool. I didn't get that chance when I was a kid.
I'm sure I'll keep writing about these thoughts as I go through them. So far I've enjoyed reading about other mom's experiences with the first day of school. So many kiddos do cry at first, but they eventually work through it and enjoy going to school. It gives me hope for Maya and for myself.
“Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow.”
-Mary Anne Radmacher