This week Soph starts school, she won't be full time for a few weeks yet which I don't think will help either of us, but she's starting and I'm not really sure how I feel.
The sensible part of me knows this is just what has to happen, that I felt the same with Alf and he was fine and that she will love it. The other niggly part of my brain just thinks she is still so tiny, it's massively the end of an era, I have no control over any of it and I'm terrified of being alone.
As we get her uniform together this week and map out her super complicated starting hours on the calendar, it's all feeling all too real, my babies are growing up. Fast.
Although we won't be having any more children, I'm also not even nearly ready to be back to just being 'me', whatever that is and spending the full day without a shadow, going to the toilet in peace and having a tidier house. All those moments I've wished for a few minutes to myself or to not have the room trashed as I tidy feel so silly now as I literally grip onto every minute, every cuddle, every call for a snack as if it's the last. I really wonder how I will do this, I know I have to but it feels so hard and I'm struggling to see the positives other than that they need an education and will have a lot more fun at school with friends than at home with me, I think?
I hate school runs, I hate those naggy mornings that always seem rushed no matter how much preparation I try and do and I hate that that chapter has gone oh so quickly and I'll be dropping them both off for full days of learning, of spending more time with strangers than me and as much as I moan about the clutter and chaos of being a stay at home Mum, living in a tidy house suddenly feels very unappealing. I love the noise, the chaos, the mess, I love it all. I don't think it helps that we had an amazing summer together and were literally glued to each other every day.
Having just spent six weeks together, it feels more like two, I wonder how we filled all those days but return to school with lots of new memories and treasured days together, of which I'm sure there will be many more in the holidays and over the weekends. It still feels hard though and even though Alf is heading into year two, it feels just as hard as that first day at nursery or reception or year one all over again. I'm really not cut out for the emotional side of motherhood!
My anxiety is through the roof at the moment for various reasons which isn't helping. I'm not worried about anything in particular, I just feel the need to have my babies close, to be there when they fall, cry or just need a cuddle. It hurts me that I just have to sit and wait and work and wonder what they are up to.
So as September is here and in full flow, I'm counting down these last hours together at home, embracing the sibling battles, the Lego underfoot and emptiness of the snack cupboard and preparing them for the next stage of their journey. I'm happy they are so confident and happy to return to school, I love that they are excited to learn, to see friends and make new ones, I love that they will excitedly bark out every second of their day on the walk home, but I'll miss them so much.
Do you have any little ones heading off to reception this year?