THAT FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL

THAT FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL

In case you wondered where’s the blogger gone or if my new found love in blogging died out too soon … let me tell you that Summer has finally arrived here … which translates into me spending more time outdoors than sitting on my laptop indoors. It is that time of the year when the warmth returns in the Northern hemisphere, the days lengthen and Sun comes out to play.

And with Summer comes our annual ritual of dumping the winter gear into suitcases and setting up the summer wardrobe! My husband hates the activity for its nuisance value. While he recommends getting rid of all the obsolete stuff, I make fuss over keeping some of my kids’ old clothes that they no longer fit into ..…. memory sake.

I love looking at those outfits just the way one would look into old photographs. It takes me down the memory lane to relive the years gone past ….. oh that one she wore it on her 1st birthday, that one on our 1st Diwali in Canada. This time I stumbled upon the one my Buttercup wore on her 1st day to school.

Kid’s first day to school is a huge affair for all parents and I would be a liar if I denied preparing for this event days ahead. My elder one was a stereotype and so was her first day to school. She was super excited, posed perfectly for the customary photograph and jauntily walked off kissing me goodbye.

However, the younger one’s first day to school was a bit Different (just like herself) We mentally prepared her for it for days. Like most of the kids with Autism she does not like suprises, she’s at ease if she knows what to expect. So, we talked to her about school going fun, showed her the school pictures, related videos and what not. After an eventful summer came the beautiful September morning when my Buttercup was to start Kindergarten. We were thrilled but had to act completely calm. No new clothes, no photo session …. nothing that would add on to her anxiety. To me she seemed too small to manage the whole long day on her own. I was apprehensive about how would she do? What if she does not like the environment? What if other kids annoy her? What if she needs something and could not express? What if she misses me?

As we reached school campus, I noticed other moms giving last minute instructions to their kids but there was no point straining myself with that …… my kid won’t even remember her mother the moment she steps in the school leave alone the tips. So, we stood at the school gate from where her teacher would escort her through a fenced area, to the classroom door. I kissed her goodbye while she was busy looking at some kids playing basketball, fixed her hair & the dress one last time and watched her take those tiny steps, holding teacher’s hand and moving away from me. Shahrukh Khan pops up in my head ‘Agar ye tujhse pyaar karti hai, toh yeh palat ke dekhegi ‘ with my heart pounding hard with every ‘palat’. She reaches the door ….. not even a look, not even a wave ….. I’m blowing kisses to her teacher and she’s on her way.  It ached real bad, like a whack on my heart ….. ofcourse, I was a new Autism Mom.

But years later, when looking at that dress brought back all the bitter sweet memories, I dare to smile.  I smile because we’ve come a long way and now I understand …. Its OK or it will be OK. Although our brains may be very different but our hearts are very similar.  And we would end each day happily snuggled up together in the bed knowing that despite of the hold autism has over my perfect little girl’s brain, her mommy will always hold her heart.

Some days will be hard, some days will be beautiful but the most important thing we can do everyday is love her and make sure she knows she is loved.



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