June 25, 2012

The end of an Era

No, I am not talking about that time where I had abs (although I could, because this time also seems to have ended for good).

I am talking about the end of the time of my baby still being a baby. At least Baby N°1.

The past few weeks have been challenging on the Mother Hen front. Ten days ago was the summer party at Malo’s Crèche (the day care centre), and the last one we would be attending. And I cried. The images of almost three years of my life, of our life, went by in front of my eyes. How I was crying my head off (yes, this is becoming a recurring theme on this blog since I became a mum – I could never pull it as a tough investment banker anymore even if I had to) the first day Malo went to day-care or the first week (and many others) when he started going full time.  How amazingly gifted my son proved to be, his first (and following) drawings works of art proudly kept in a file or framed and hanged on the wall (but I had an excuse: the colour scheme matched that of the living room). The relationship built with the ladies saints looking after Malo and his friends, who put the meaning of “dedication” to a whole new level, regularly calling at work to say “I have noticed it was a bit hard for you to leave Malo this morning (and I thought I had hidden it all), but don’t worry, he’s right now in front of my eyes, having a lot of fun, and  he got plenty of cuddles”.

It has been so special too to see Malo changing from a baby to a toddler to a little social animal with his group of pals.  Talking proudly about “mes copains” (“my friends”). Requesting to invite said “copains” at home… only to cry because he then has to lend his bike – I can’t blame him though, some things should not have to be shared.  Coming home with new words he does not understand the meaning of (not that they always have a meaning, mind you), but which must be cool since his friends in the know (ie those with big sisters / brothers) shout them 24-7 (and was tempted to complain some of these words were really stupid, before I realised some of them I was already saying with unlimited bliss almost 40 years ago… good things often stand the test of time).  Talking about “Cars Mc Queen” even though we do not have TV and he has no clue what this is all about – I must admit to having since caved in to the Cars craziness and bought Cars boxer shorts, and am not even (too) ashamed about forgetting for once about my “no Disney-or-what-have-you-commercial-crap-in-this-house” principle, seeing the joy on Malo’s face when he got them.

In September, my baby is going to school. I know, this is school, not some hardcore military camp. I know, school for 3-year olds still involve a lot of fun things, playing, singing, drawing, even having nap times (although on naps being a fun good thing I am sure Malo would beg to differ). I know that even learning things can be fun (if well taught, and physics aside, but maybe that’s just me, and there won’t be any physics just yet anyway).  But school is also about having 25 kids for 1 teacher in the classroom, not 15 kids for 3 ladies as in day-care, so I am not sure cuddles will stand high on this lady’s agenda. It is also about discipline, about sitting, standing, being silent, answering, drawing, running ( yes, even running, I am sure) only when the teacher says so. And although I am all in favour of discipline, this should not necessarily be 8 hours a day, 4 days a week. Not for my baby… and not when it involves limiting his totally understandable love of running, that goes without saying.

To make things even tougher on Mother Hen, Meije will start going to day-care 3 days a week pretty much on the same day Malo will start school. And here it looks like I will definitely prove wrong those who say that separation from your baby is easier with the second one. Believe me, that’s bulls***.  As far as I am concerned, I feel the urge for crying when I think about my girl and I being apart as much as for I did when Malo was her age. And since there is no plan for another kid, I also admit to a fair amount of nostalgia thinking about the time as a full-time mum with a tiny baby that will soon be gone and never be again (although yes, I know, she only starts in September so these are not over yet. Call me a masochist… and you’ll be right as this blog has already often shown).

In other (not directly related, although…) news, I am still not running (much), but as there is definitely some improvement, so it could just be that the end of the “me as the mother of two babies” era will not also be that of the “running mom” one.  In the meantime, I’ll take my (relative) inactivity as a reminder of how awful my poor little boy will soon feel when regularly denied the fundamental right to run whenever he feels like it.

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