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Let the record reflect...Patience and I both trusted her independence today

I went through the car-rider line today to drop Patience at school. We talked about the hall and landmarks that lead to her hall that leads to her classroom. We reviewed the route three times. We talked about what to do if she feels lost or uncertain.

I reiterated my confidence in her, her ability to do this, to be fine. She agreed.

We pulled up to the drop off spot. She jumped out of the car with her backpack and identifier tag. She walked to the entrance, looked at my (paused) car, gave a little wave, took a deep breath, put on her Resolute Face and walked in to the school.

I only had to yoga breathe for five minutes.

I have not called the school. She is fine.

And this afternoon she will be very blase on the outside and very proud on the inside that she---on her own---achieved another Big School goal.

Patience was never a child for "I do it myself" or "No! Me do it!" or "Back away Mama, I indepewent!" like Persistence is. She preferred babying, help, someone to do it for her. I've always had to push her out there to meet challenges. Each time I do so, I have to remind her about how she rose to the challenge and succeeded last time.

She's got her confidence and feet under her, and she always takes a deep breath and agrees she can do it.

Her favorite analogy is the Ferris Wheel.

She was so scared of going on that, and stuck to the baby rides: the little airplanes and carousel.

One day we said you will try it. So she did. And she loved it!

So now, when we bring up a challenge, she says, "I was scared of the Ferris Wheel and from the ground it looked too scary. But I got on it, and once I was there, it was fun. It's like that, Mom, isn't it?"

Baby. Big girl.

I don't get choked up taking her to school. I do get choked up at moments like these, the moments when she feels her wings, unfurls them, and takes off...albeit cautiously.

Next week, she'll tackle the lunch line.

Copyright 2007 Julie Pippert
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Anonymous said…
The tentative kids have to be braver than the fearless ones. They must face down their fears, while the others just go pell-mell towards disaster.

Good for both of you!
Unknown said…
Those are the moments that get to me, too. Even something as simple as Marley hugging her teacher yesterday. She doesn't normally show that kind of affection to people other than her immediate family and one or two friends. I got a little ferklempt.
Mad said…
Finally getting back on the bloggy horse. I know that we have both commented on this before but I am struck once again by how much Miss M is like a younger version of Patience.
Julie @ Letter9 said…
That's interesting that your oldest is the more tentative one. I'm the oldest and also definitely the one who always needed/wanted help with things rather than wanting to do them on my own. As an adult that has translated into my mother thinking I am STILL helpless. : ) But I always thought I was strange for not being the intrepid first child. Maybe it is more common than I thought.
painted maypole said…
wow. at MQs small private school a staff person gets her out of the car and walks her in. i would be so nervous just letting her go!

You AND patience are brave girls, indeed.
Liv said…
And I think I might have given birth to a girl child from opposite land. She has gone to school for the first time this week with excitement and glee. This part of her personality is so NOT me!

Good for P!
Christine said…
that brave, beautiful girl. deep breathe. very, deep, breathe.
Gwen said…
We talk a lot to Charlotte about not letting her fear conquer her. It's a process, for sure. Good for Patience. And for you!

And they make kindergarteners go through a lunch line? At our school, they get to eat in the safety of their classrooms, and hot lunch and milk are brought into them (remember what I said about moving up here! :))
flutter said…
She's a nervy little thing! I think I like her :)
Amie Adams said…
You're so right. It's those times when they go out on their own in the big world and conquer it that are amazing.
S said…
Oh Julie! I'm just so happy for the both of you!
Kyla said…
Wow! We always do car line, but the teacher helps them out of the car and they all sit in the foyer together before walking to class with the teacher. This is HUGE for Patience! I'm so proud!

BubTar's only school news so far is that he got his first kindergarten light change yesterday. Evidently, the hallway tiles are not for hopscotching on the way to library. ;)
Bea said…
Independence is a slippery concept, I find. Several months ago, I posted about how surprised I was at Pie's requests for "hep" - Bub had never been interested in accepting help from others, so I wasn't prepared for how often Pie would demand my help.

But now, she is fully immersed in the "I can do it myself!" stage - another milestone that Bub has skipped. In one sense, he is very independent (in that he resists input or assistance with things he's trying to do), but in another sense he has very little urge to begin doing for himself the things we've always done for him: getting dressed, pouring cereal, etc.
Anonymous said…
I love this post. I can almost see Patience's wings taking flight! What a lovely picture!

I am and always was one of those hesitant and frightened types and I see this tendancy in my daughter as well. It worries me somewhat. Not that she won't find her strength and resources just like Patience. No, I worry she will miss some of the wonder and beauty, always focusing on the stress and anxiety like I did. But, as you wonderfully stated, when it comes easy, there is no sense of pride and accomplishment. Is it a positive trade off then?

Yes, most of the time I think so. But every so often I just long for that carefree feeling of enjoying the wind in my hair instead of stressing over how far away the ground is from my feet!!
NotSoSage said…
Good for both of you. I'm so glad.
River said…
Bravo, Patience.
Snoskred said…
I too have an image of her wings, they are pink and purple and glittery, sparkling in the sunlight. But maybe it's just me. :)

Lawyer Mama said…
Ah, what a big step for her! Way to go, Big P!
My oldest, my daughter, is my cautious, tentative child.

She hides behind me while her brother charges forward.

I'm so familiar with the worries you've been sharing.
Unknown said…
The girl is very nice and sweet. She is hesitant child.


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