Thursday, 6 December 2012

Just give me a moment to mourn before I embrace the change

Today is Shakeel (13)'s last day of primary school.

The atmosphere this morning was sombre. Unfortunately my kids seem to take after me; focussing on the end of an era instead of the beginning of a new one.

I know that the time will come when I'll start getting excited about all the change we're about to experience. Right now I just want to mourn the end of an era.

I wish I was the type of positive person who could embrace change. Change scares me. I bitch and moan about my life at times, but I really love the status quo. I fear what lies ahead.

My kids attend a school in the city centre, so they don't really get to hang out with their school friends outside of school. They therefore spend all their time with one another - playing, laughing, fighting, arguing, competing etc. They put on plays and shows to perform for us. They choreograph dance sequences.

As much as they fight, they are really really close. I am so afraid that that is about to change.

This is the last time all three older kids will be at the same school. The last time they'll share their common experiences at the end of the day; the last time they'll be able to relate as closely to one another's experiences at school. Mention the name of a certain teacher and they all shudder. Mention the name of the school clown and they all giggle. No more afternoon banter about kids and teachers who form part of all their lives.

Next year Shakeel will have his own friends, his own teachers and his own experiences. He will no longer care as much about what happens at his sisters' school - his focus will be on his own experiences. Gone is that common experience further cementing the bond between the 3 of them. I'm so afraid of how that will affect their relationship.

Shakeel will, for the first time, have school friends in our neighbourhood. Does this mean that he will now be spending time with them that he would previously have spent with his sisters (and me)? I know that it's way past time that my son should be enjoying his own relationships outside school. But I worry about what that means for his relationship with his sisters. And with me.

Tharaa (11) will probably join her brother at the same high school in a few years time, but Shakeel and Nuha (7) will never again be at the same school. Despite the 6 year age gap between them, they are really close. Does this mean that is about to change?

This morning I'm sad for Shakeel; for the fact that he is saying goodbye to the teachers and friends and the life he's had for the past seven years.

I'm also afraid of how this change will affect the close bonds within this family.

And, as if that is not enough, this is the last school day I spend with my baby - my darling little angel - Aisha (3), since she will be starting creche at the beginning of next year. And just as I'd anticipated, the tears started pouring as soon as I wrote that sentence. I'll deal with this issue another day - I just don't have the strength for that intensity of emotion this morning.

As I waved goodbye to my older 3 kids this morning before heading back inside for my breakfast, I realised that it is the last time I'll be doing that. Next year, I'll probably be dashing out the door dragging along a screaming Aisha (or maybe I'll just lock us both in a room where nobody can reach us to separate us - but, like I said, more on that another day). I'll probably first drop Shakeel at his new high school while trying to placate my darling baby babies. I wonder how well I'll navigate the traffic on the Koeberg interchange through my own blinding tears.

Did I mention how much I hate change?

And now for the rational part of this post. I realise that out of these endings, many new beginnings will be born. I realise that children are resilient and will adapt to their new circumstances (probably better than I will). I realise that these changing circumstances will probably affect the dynamic of the relationships within this family, but that that is not necessarily a bad thing. And that the loving bonds that exist between my kids are strong - that changing the dynamic of their relationships will not necessarily mean that they will no longer be close.

I realise all this. I understand that change, though uncomfortable (and sometimes even painful) is necessary for new opportunities and positive growth.


And I will embrace this positivity (and inspire my kids to do the same). But not just now. Now I just want to pause, remember and reflect through my tears. I want to mourn the passing of the way things were.


And then when this moment has passed, I'll spend the rest of the day savouring every precious second with my baby; doing all the things she loved doing while we were at home alone together for the past three years.


 ''Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore." -Andre Gide.

"Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together." -Marilyn Monroe.

'' Fear, uncertainty and discomfort are your compasses toward growth." - Unknown

Quotes obtained here



No comments: