Year 6, my goodness it’s been an emotional ride! But nothing quite prepares you for the final weeks. You know when they’re starting Primary School and everyone says “Oh it goes so quickly, they’ll be teenagers before you know it!” Well, believe it – 7 years has gone by and soon it’ll be time to let go. He is so ready, beyond it in fact. Me? Not so much!
I find my lip quivering and tears filling my eyes on an almost daily basis. Seeing him in his leavers hoodie last week, sob! Next week it’s time for him to say his goodbyes to a place that has been so familiar for 7 years. Here come my tears again! It’s not that I’m sad – I’m really excited for his future and all the opportunities that his amazing new school will bring. They’re tears of pride, of reflection, of an ending to this part of his life.
It’s almost like grieving for moments that will soon be gone and never return. And the worry, oh the worry! Primary school is this amazing nurturing place and I can’t help but worry about him finding his feet in a brand new place – despite it just being the other side of a fence to where he is now!
Covid has taken so much away from his final years at school but I can’t help but feel overwhelmingly proud for all that he has achieved despite this. His resilience, creativity and hunger for learning assure me that he is ready to move on. There was no residential trip, no last sports day to watch with lunchtime picnic, no opportunities to help younger year groups or high school visits. Some rites of passage that I recall from my own childhood. Yet they have still had the best time with a week of activities and even recorded their leavers play – I watched it with tears rolling down my cheeks!
I don’t think there is any way of preparing ourselves for this bombardment of emotions as our children prepare to move onto the next stage of their lives but as I sit here now I feel full of reflection. Here’s some memories to get those tears flowing –
The pride you felt on their very first day back in reception – His uniform was slightly too big and his backpack swamped him!
Wondering if he would make friends – Of course he did! But you wonder if they will feel left out or uncomfortable without you. He happens to have the best little group of friends, two will be in his Year 7 tutor group, yay!
Holding hands all the way to school – pointing out various “landmarks” like a particularly friendly cat, a fancy door number or a favourite tree. Crossing the road together and reminding him to look both ways. (In the last few weeks he has walked home alone a few times – It’s weird!)
Those Nativity outfits and cute little songs they sang – stuck in our heads for weeks afterwards!
Stay and play sessions – where he would show me around his classroom and we would sit together on the carpet. His younger brother would have a go at writing (then 2 years old) and his baby sister would be in the sling. I remember always feeling so hot and a bit flustered!
Parents evenings – Meeting with his teachers in the hall and then flicking through his work laid out in his classroom. I loved seeing where he sat. I wonder if we’ll ever see any of his high school classrooms?
How is it that he can suddenly read chapter books, write incredible stories and work out pretty complex equations? I’m sure he was only just sounding out words C-A-T and mistaking 6 for 9 or b for p?!
Playing with his brother at lunchtime – Pre Covid when we had never even heard of class bubbles! I loved hearing about how they would find each other and play with each others friends.
Soon he will be walking to and from school without us everyday. His school day will be longer and he will be finding his way to each lesson. New friends will be made, work will become more challenging and we will start to see a glimpse of the adult he will become. Truth is he has outgrown Primary School (I must add definitely not in height, though I’m sure a growth spurt is due!) His mind is ready for more. I’m just so glad we have younger children and I don’t need to say my final goodbyes to Primary School days just yet.
Next Friday you’ll find me in sunglasses no matter the weather, a handful of tissues and in a general emotional mess! He on the other hand will most likely announce with pride that he has completed Primary School with a huge smile on his face. How I love that smile, here I go again…. sob sob.
Update – The day has come and the sunglasses were worn! There were many days that the school run was something to moan about and I’d sigh with relief that the holidays were here again. Now it’s one of the main things I’m going to miss!