My kid started public school this week.
My kid, who has been my constant daily companion since 2015 now has to be someplace at a certain time every day. My kid, whom I honestly thought might want to be homeschooled forever, has made it evident that he wants to go to school and be with lots of people his own age all day long. I get it.
When I was little, I was terrified to leave my mom’s side and would have been so relieved to stay home. When I was little, I had no secure bonds with my family, though.
My kid sure does.
The more secure one's attachment to their parents, oftentimes, the easier it is to transition to other settings full of strangers. Or so many psychologists have written. These days, I'm inclined to believe them.
The transition from free-schooling to public school is loaded for a loot bag of reasons. One such confounding issue is the fact that, as much as I adore teachers, I can't shake the industrial-age institutional vibe of organizing children into lots so their parents can work all day. Perhaps that’s why I was drawn to schooling my own child in the first place: because I am a teacher at heart. Albeit a rebellious one; like a “Hey, man, I'm not judging anybody” David Gruber Allen, aging hippie guidance counselor type of educator.
Again, I get it. Most of us have to work somewhere. But I managed to steer the family ship out into open sea for nearly seven years, and nowadays it's coming down an inlet, approaching land.
That's how we do.
There has been a lot of morning silence and room for meditation and creation and chores and work to be done. But mostly, there have been tears of bewilderment. Pastries eaten hastily alongside overcooked eggs and solo drives listening to dirgey music. Lunches made and papers signed.
What a lot of folks assume has been weight lifted off of my day-to-day is actually quite a large dumbbell set precariously upon my head each day.
To stay composed, instead of composing a new song of my own (that'll come soon enough) I sang a mournful song I have loved for years. I sang it over and over again, and played piano with the naive confidence of a child whose quirky parents have a trusty dusty piano sitting around.
Here, forever, is that song: