The inside running board of our car still has some sand in it from a beach trip that we took a couple of weeks ago. It needs vacuuming very badly, but I hate to remove the last physical sign of summer.
Today was the first day back to school for my child. I hated to see this day come so soon. It has been a very fun summer with a lot of new adventures for Princess Buttercup, her dad, and me. It seems that school starts earlier every year.
I remember my very first day of school when I was a child. I had attended pre-school (we called it “nursery school” back then) and half-day kindergarten, but it was time for “big girl school.”
Grandma M had made my back-to-school jumpsuit. It had pale green and white stripes with a green iron-on decal that said, “Go!”
Go I did.
Mom put me on the bus as it stopped in front of the store. The “bus” was a big green and white van that a local lady loaded up with about 15 kids and drove us to our school near Latitude, Mississippi. Mom told me that I would ride the bus, and then she would come right away to join me. I suppose she wanted me to have that separation experience.
I didn’t like it. I was nervous with tummy butterflies. But I went, as I was told.
I know that I felt comforted when Mom showed up to take me to assembly. After talking to a lady on the other side of her for a while, Mom turned to me and said encouragingly, “Stephanie, this little girl’s name is ‘Stephanie,’ too.” I wasn’t sure that I liked that, but I was sure that I would be the other Stephanie’s best friend because of the commonality of our names.
First grade was quite the experience.
To this day, I remember the smell of the carton of chocolate milk that I had for snacks. I remember being switched with a small twig on my ankle, by my teacher…probably because I was daydreaming in class. I did that a lot. I’d a whole lot rather be out picking flowers in the pasture or playing with brother Ben than listening to my teacher talk on and on.
I didn’t like to hear the teacher yell, either.
During that school year, I remember being at a family gathering and passionately telling another little girl, “I hate school!” Mom said in horrified surprise, “Stephanie!” But I did. I hated it until I got to college. And that other Stephanie and I never hit it off like the friendship that I found in another girl and my “boyfriend” Shawn.
But I did make it through the school years with a solid education, which I am most thankful to have.
Now, I’ll be packing lunches and snacks for my daughter, just like Mom did for me.
And there are other summer vacations to look forward to. For now, I think I need to grab my vacuum and go take care of that sand.