Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Dear Pottery Barn Kids

Dear Pottery Barn Kids,

I know you have to do business. I know you're not trying to be distressing. But you're ruining everything, did you know that? I was all happy and cheery, having had a lovely summer day with my two young daughters, NOT EVEN THINKING ABOUT SEPTEMBER. And then you had to send me your back-to-school catalog yesterday, the one full of backpacks and personalized lunch bags and thermoses, with child-sized desks and art tables and tips for making "study spaces" out of unused corners of one's house (aside: do other people actually have such spaces in their houses?). And it hit me: my first baby is heading off into the world of elementary school this year--a school I know very little about, when it comes down to it--and I'm not ready.

It's not as if it's a surprise. I've had at least five months--since the parents' kindergarten info meeting last March--to think about sending my firstborn off to kindergarten. But it all seemed like such a long way off, like something I knew, in theory, would occur, but that I couldn't quite fit into my mind's eye just yet. A puzzle piece without the context of the rest of the puzzle. Elementary school? My child? Really?

Honestly, Pottery Barn Kids, I'm not ready to think about backpacks and lunchbags and personalized water bottles just yet. I've got five and a half weeks left of summer: five and a half weeks with my girl to myself, before I set her out on that path of "real" school, that road involving daily hours away from me, school arrivals and departures on her own rather than with me by her side, experiences outside the realm of the past five at-home years with me and her baby sister.

You can keep your homework desks and craft tables for now. I know she won't be 100% mine forever, but for the next five and a half weeks we're busy with bubbles and sand toys and the splash pool. I'm not ready yet for more than that, and your catalog is making me sad. Back-to-school can wait just a little bit longer, can't it? Thank you.

Sincerely,
Shannon

2 comments:

latisha said...

we started here monday. ive had calls upon calls of crying mamas and thier first days.

good luck!!

Mnmom said...

It really won't be as bad as you think it will. And the tears will pass VERY quickly when you see how competent and proud she is.

I have a video of Lina getting on the bus the first time, and I still get a knot in my stomach just watching it.

The best description I've ever read is that having kids is like "agreeing to let your heart go wandering around outside your body".