To My Not-so-little Man: Reflections on Starting Kindergarten

To My Not-so-little Man:

You don’t know it, but last night while you were fast asleep and dreaming, I slipped under the covers next to you.  I needed to hold you close one more time before our lives change forever.  As I held your hand {the one with the cute little freckle} and kissed your smooth cheek, I remembered the day you first came into our lives.  Ever since that day, it’s been you and me.  


Playing. Laughing. Learning. Reading. Creating.


Almost every day for the past five years, where I go, you go.  We run errands together.  We have lunch dates and treat dates together.  We bake cupcakes and play games and tell stories. Together.  But everything is about to change.

Armed with your Angry Birds backpack and lunchbox, you will walk into school to start a new chapter of your life.  For the first time, you’ll be experiencing all kinds of things every day that I won’t know about unless you tell me.  You’ll make friends who you will come to care about far more than the stuffed animal “friends” you carry everywhere and love right now.


Even though I pray that it never happens, I know that someday some child will say something unkind to you.  Someone will make you feel left out.  Someone will hurt that sweet and loving heart of yours.  And I can’t stop it.  I can only hope that there will be others who come alongside you and build you up.  Others who see all the goodness and creativity and humor that I see in you every day.

Your teacher will love you.  She will encourage you and help you and she will earn a place in your heart.  Daddy and I will no longer be the only ones you look up to, the ones with all the answers.  You will learn to look to your teachers and your friends for approval and to help you answer the questions in that inquisitive mind of yours.

Your days will be filled with books, projects, classes, and routines.  You’ll be learning wonderful things!  But there will be no more Tuesday afternoon treat dates at Starbucks where we play Go Fish while you eat Lemon Pound Cake and I savor an Iced Mocha.  No more lazy pajama days where we both wear our pj’s until dinnertime and play board games and laugh until we hiccup.


As for me?  I’ll save plenty of money at the grocery store because I’ll be shopping by myself and no sneaky little helper will be putting things in the cart when I’m not looking.  But I will miss your help.  Your smile.  Your voice that’s always just a little too loud when we’re inside.  And I’m not the only one.  Ms. June and Ms. Beth and the others at the library will miss you at storytime.  Ms. Verna and the other baristas will miss you at Starbucks, asking them to give you the “lemon cake with the most icing.” The ladies at the post office will miss giving you stickers and hearing about your day.  But I will miss you most of all.


Yes, this is a wonderful time for you.  You will learn and grow, and I couldn’t be more proud of the little man you are becoming.  I will have time to get all my work done, to do fun things for myself, and even to use the bathroom all by myself.  But as I eat lunch and look at the empty chair across the table, I’ll be missing you.  As I push the grocery cart, I will keep unconsciously looking around for you.  And I’ll have to play some music to cancel out the silence left when there’s no one saying, “Mommy.  Mommy.  MOMMY!”

Family October2

Oh, my little love, things are changing for both of us.  I will be praying for you each day as you go to school, and I will anxiously look forward to hearing all about everything you did and learned when you come home.  I hope you’ll tell me the funny things, the sad things, the exciting things, and even the boring things.  I hope that as you grow, you will continue to trust me with your secrets.  I hope that no matter how old you are, you always know that I love you to the moon and back infinity times.  And I hope that you will always look at me and tell me as you did this morning that I am the perfect mommy for you.  You are my precious gift, the best I’ve ever been given, and I love you more than words can say.



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  1. Thanks for making me cry. Seriously, I’m a mess right now. This is such a beautiful sentiment to your sweet son. Speaking from experience (being that my “baby” is now in 6th grade) I can honestly say that he will always think of you as the perfect mommy for him, even if it goes unspoken sometimes. You have an incredible connection to your little man, and he will always trust you completely. I’m so blessed that Marley and I have that same connection. At 11 1/2 years of age, she still trusts me completely and tells me everything.
    I’ll be praying for you, too, because I know how hard this will be for you. And it’s OK to cry when you drop him off. Let it out, cry til you have no more tears. (Then go get a Starbucks.) No one on this earth will ever be closer to him than you, and he will always know that. Promise. (Pinky swear.) Love you…

  2. Thanks for making me cry Amy as I have a cold you can imagine that this isn’t a great look. I love what you have written and it’s funny that I have friends who will be seeing there last child off to school next year and they aren’t sadden by it but looking forward to getting rid of the child. I still have a few years before all mine are at school BUT next year I’m looking forward to getting the opportunity to building a special bond with my baby (who’ll be 2). For the first time in his life it’ll be just the two of us at home together as the other 3 will have school and kindy. As I read what you wrote I’ve picked up a few ideas of things we can do together each Thursday and Friday. Thank you for sharing these beautiful and inspiring thoughts with us.

  3. Oh Amy, it is sad to see them go, but with each milestone comes great things too that you will simply love and adore. My eldest is 15 and my youngest 2 3/5 of mine have been off to school and my two boys are in high school. Sometimes I miss the little people they were but watching them make their way in the world seeing the world through their eyes is still amazing. Be sad for this time but be happy too because you are going to see an amazing thing when LC starts to learn about things. I will however assure you our heart will break and be filled with joy many many times over during it. Good luck to you both.

  4. You remind me of me. For years and years I cried the night before each child’s birthday. They thought I was silly, but they don’t have kids yet! Hope you are enjoying the quiet.

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