To my daughters the night before school starts, 2012

My sweet daughters,

I didn’t think when I wrote your letter last year that it would be something I’d repeat year after year. Maybe I will, maybe I won’t, but obviously, this year here I am sitting at my computer pecking away. I’ve tucked you both in – I can hear you both rumbling around upstairs -it doesn’t quite sound like sleep to me, ladies.

I digress.

But I think the first day of school is like a birthday in a way – a special occasion that should somehow be marked. A fresh start, a new beginning, more than a blip on the radar.

Frankly, you both are so burned out from summer you’ve both admitted how eager you are to return to your daily classroom routines and that excites me for you because after meeting your teachers last week I have to say: I think this is going to be a very good year.

Pumpkin, this is second grade for you. For second grade, I had Mrs. M. When I was in first grade, I had a split class – I went to the second grade room for a good chunk of the day, I’m not entirely sure why. And Mrs. M was the teacher I spent most of the day with – so I had her again in second grade so I already knew her. I can’t remember if it was second or third grade when I developed the crush on the cute boy who wore a retainer, but he was in my class both years. I liked horses a lot and I had a friend who drew horses really well. Her name was Tania, and weirdly enough, we both ended up moving and ended up in the same junior high years later. I really loved horses, I had forgotten that. It’s kind of like how much you love dogs. I was a horse nerd. My favorite color was purple.

Princess, in fifth grade I had Mrs. L (I think). I had transferred schools from the school on top of the hill to this new school (the other school closed down – we all had to find new schools to go to). I remember the first day of school, meeting the principal. I was a tremendous Madonna fan (yep, she’s been around THAT long) and I had these ridiculous plastic bracelets that I wore [To my friends who are reading this: SHUT UP. I don’t want to hear it.] My new school had a rule – only two bracelets allowed on each arm. I remember the principal telling me that in the meeting – I distinctly remember rolling my eyes at him. Don’t roll your eyes at your principal. Our class wrote a play that year – I played Ms. Welch, a teacher. I remember at one point my line was something like, “Girls, control yourselves!” and one of the ‘students’, played by a friend of mine who I STILL talk to on Facebook occasionally, responded with the line, “Control? You mean like Janet Jackson?” Yes, she’s been around that long too. Longer even.

It all feels like forever ago, it really does.

I’m excited for you both – you have new outfits set out, ready to put on in the morning. My sister has cut your hair and you both have cute new shoes to wear. You’ve taken your bath, Pumpkin, and you breezed through your shower, Princess, and both of you are clean and shiny and ready to go.

I feel like I should offer you some advice – but I think for the most part, you already know what I would ask of you – to be kind, to be good, to do your best, to try.

I want to add, please, be a good friend. Especially you, Princess. This is your last year before middle school. Please be the nice girl that isn’t cruel, that is gentle with her words, that can be counted on for empathy when needed. Please know that doesn’t mean you have to like everyone (far from it!) but I expect that you treat even the people you don’t like with civility, at least. You don’t have to be their BFF, or even ask about the weather, but please don’t be a mean girl.

I want you to take each day as it comes and make the most of it – try your hardest and give your best effort and know that I’m here and your teachers are there to help if you get stuck, need a bit more explanation or clarification.

Know that asking questions doesn’t mean that you’re stupid.

That it really is important to get a full night’s sleep.

Know that I’m very proud of you already for being who you are, and I’m very excited to see where this year takes you. You are both really growing into amazing people, and every day I am blown away at who you are and how much my life is better with you in it.

This is gonna be a good year, I can feel it.

I am so very lucky to be your mom. I love you both with my whole heart.





About sarah

Sarah is a book nerd, a music lover, an endorphin junkie, a coffee addict. Oh, and a goof ball. She writes, she tweets, and she sings off key.

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