One Day I Will Rule the World

World Domination, Babies and Middle Eastern Dance

September 21, 2012

Getting On

Well, summer’s winding down and the kids are back in school. The last few months really have been hectically busy. June and July disappeared on prepping for and then doing dance performances and then August went to working on a client website with a very tight timeline.

We had hoped to go camping this summer, but it never happened. I kept saying, “after July” and then it was August and the first weekend was too busy and then Ethan and Rachel were visiting their grandparents for the next two weekends and then the last weekend was labour day which included the Fireworks festival, my aunt’s birthday, an old friend being in town and her baby shower, and another old friend’s out-of-town wedding. Then school registration was that Tuesday and since then we’ve been dealing with all the busyness that back to school time entails.

Hannah started school this year and it’s really underscored how different she is from my older two. Though maybe I just mean how different she is. Period. Because my older two just had the normal response to first days of school. They were nervous, a tiny bit shy, a little bit excited. If they hadn’t been in daycares already where kids from their daycare were starting at the same school at the same time, the natural nervousness/shyness might have been a bigger deal.

Hannah has just been pure excited. She didn’t know anyone in class going into it. But she’s been announcing to everyone that we meet on the street, “My name’s Hannah. I’m four. I’m going to school soon.” And on the morning of her first day, she walked up to every kid we passed on the way to school and waved an in-your-face hello to them, announcing, “I’m Hannah. It’s my first day of school.”

When we got to the playground, she marched off to play, introducing herself to everyone she passed (which was a lot of people). “Hi, I’m Hannah, it’s my first day of school. Hi, my name is Hannah. I like your bunnyhug*, my name is Hannah.” (* hoodie)

When the bell rang, I took her into her classroom, got her shoes changed and then I said to her teacher, “do you need me to stay for anything?” And the teacher said comfortingly, “oh, you can stay as long as you need to.” I guess that’s what you say to kindergarten parents on their first day. But I looked at Hannah and she was already deep in excited conversation with her neighbour, and I said, “she doesn’t need me here.” So I gave her a hug and left.

I expected to feel more emotional about the “growing up” milestone for my last baby – but just because she’s Hannah, she’s seemed rather grown up for a long time already.

Rachel had a dentist appointment that first day, which meant I might not be back at the right time to pick Hannah up, so Ian had arranged to take an early lunch and get her. But then Rachel’s appointment got canceled, so Ian and I met up at the coffee shop across the street from the school, grabbed coffees and strolled over to meet Hannah at the end of class.

I think Hannah was a little exhausted from the morning because when I asked her how it had gone, she pointed forlornly at her school supplies and said, “I have to leave them here. I wanted to bring them home and back to school with me.” And then she argued with Ian about whether we wanted a ride home before he went back to work, until I told him to just go back to work and I’d walk her home.

But then on the walk home, I sipped my coffee and let her dawdle and then the sunshine and lovely weather worked their magic and she went back to being chatty and playful. We stopped so she could play on some church steps on the walk home, and that’s become something of a routine for us.

We’re two weeks in now, Hannah continues to bewilder older kids by marching through the playground greeting all of them decisively and cavalierly like she’s a celebrity making the rounds at a party (just fully assuming they know who she is and all want to be greeted) and she’s made a number of new friends, including a new best friend – a little girl who’s just as articulate as she is and who has a british accent, which is so adorable I have regular apoplexies when the two of them are playing.

I think it was only the third or fourth day of school when we walked into the school and they spotted each other and ran shrieking to hug each-other. The new friend was wearing Superman pyjamas for a school theme day and so she kept shouting, “Super-Hero Hug!” as she bear-hugged Hannah. And then her mother said to me, “I’m so glad she’s found someone she can play super-heros with. She never wants to play princesses.”

Last Thursday evening I had Hannah at the playground before I went to my dance class and Hannah fell off a piece of equipment onto her head on the sand. She behaved completely normally, didn’t lose consciousness, had full control of her body, acted completely lucid. And also wailed and cried, obviously.

But the bump on her head came up so quickly and was so very huge that it seemed to strain the skin. Ian arrived right afterward and we discussed all the ways she was acting fine. And also that the severity of the bump was most likely more about the abrasion from the sand bringing up a lot of irritation and fluids. But to be safe, Ian took her to the ER. (Where, by the way, they agreed with our conclusion, gave her a popsicle, told us what to watch for and sent her home.) (But only after four hours of waiting.)

That was a bit of a segue so I could tell another story about Hannah’s friend – because I kept Hannah home from school then on Friday to make sure she was okay and because if she’d taken any little bump getting jostled in the hallways at school, she’d probably have been pretty miserable. And then Monday, when I brought her back to school, her friend ran over and threw her arms around Hannah’s neck, exclaiming in her perfect British diction, “Oh Hannah!! I’m so glad you’re okay.”

Yeah, it’s the sweetest. We’re going to try to set up an afternoon playdate for next week.

To which her mother said, “Oh I do think that would be a good idea since they seem to be getting on so.”

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  1. Alison

     /  2012-09-21

    I love this entry and all of you so much. (That last picture is especially wonderful.)


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