I took you to school for the first time yesterday. I don't know if it was just that I was coming off of six overnight shifts in a row but it was an extremely emotional experience. I lasted okay until it was time to walk away from the school. Only having to wipe the occasional stray tear away, but as I walked away leaving you, my baby, for the first time in a world I can't have an everyday influence in, I began to fight a rush of sobs that were fighting against my control. A million thoughts raced through my head; memories of bringing you home from the hospital and watching you learn how to crawl and then to walk. Watching you dance crazily around the living room (one of your favorite activities) and then my thoughts turned to the future how this really is a first step to her growing up, and me having to let you go. For a moment I pondered on how much it hurt, on how much love I have for you my little one and how much it pains me to see you go, on how much it will always pain me to see you grow and change. No matter how good I raise you you will break my heart.
After school, when I couldn't find you right away, the thought briefly occurred that I had made a horrible mistake letting you go out on your own. You were not ready I thought. But when your teacher found you at the office trying to call me I realized how brave and how grown up you really are. I'll admit I was just a teensy disappointed that you were only a teensy bit scared. It meant that you had not needed me the way that you used to and the change was a little sad to me. I am proud of you though.
The reflections I have had over these first big steps for you have made me realize that no matter what you do it will break my heart. If you make choices that lead you into darkness and despair I will mourn and grieve for you, and I will fight for you (I will always fight for you) to come back to choices that will bring you joy. On the other hand if you always choose the right path. If you grow up to be happy and successful it will break my heart in other ways. I will miss when you played peek-a-boo with your baby brother (hopefully you will be playing peek-a-boo with children of your own). I will miss when you danced crazily around the living room. I will miss when you needed me every hour of every day, and when I got a chance to be mother to an amazing terrific little girl, because she grew up to be an amazing terrific grown woman.
So sweetie break my heart, it was yours the moment you came into this world. I am very lucky to be your mother, very lucky to hurt over these amazing first steps you are taking. Keep learning, and growing, and changing. Keep being brave, and thoughtful, and kind. Keep striving to be the best you can, and keep breaking my heart for all the right reasons.