Yesterday was The Geej's last day as a pre-kindergartener. What?! Howthehell did THAT happen?! (I know I'll be saying this over and over again as she passes milestones in her life, but seriously...)
As is customary with a lot of Montessori schools, The Geej's school has a ceremony at the end of each semester called the "Gates of Life" that symbolizes the children passing from one phase to another--whether it be from a pre-primary class to a primary class or on to "another community" (i.e., another school). I attended yesterday's Gates of Life ceremony because, although The Geej wasn't going through the (largely figurative) gates, 9 of her classmates were--9 little people who I've become quite fond of over the past two years.
Before the ceremony began, we were surprised by the arrival of Mariachis and the ensuing performance on the lawn. I mean, of COURSE there were Mariachis on the last day of school. This is Austin, after all.
Then we crowded into the (insanely hot) gym to watch the ceremonies. And y'all? I was a MESS!! I was a crying fool! And then I went with her class into the classroom where they had a special last-day-of-school "Circle Time" and they talked about the wonderful and unique attributes of each "graduate," and I cried some more. And I've got allergies. So you can only imagine the amount of tissues I went through. At one point I told the school's director, "I don't even want to know how much of a basket case I'm going to be this time next year when it's Geej's turn to graduate." And I'm serious. That school has been such a godsend, just like I knew it would be the first time I ever went there (after a holy crap! childcare/schooling crisis). The thought of her NOT going there to be in that loving, supportive, amazing environment makes my stomach hurt. And no, I DON'T yet know where she'll be attending first grade. It all depends on where we'll be living, and I'm hoping we'll sell our house and move (somewhere else in Austin) some time early next year. So yeah...
But for now, I can bask in the certainty that she's got another year to prosper, have fun, and grow at this wonderful place.