Public school started here a couple of weeks ago, and despite my feelings of not readiness, we started back as well.
Moonshine lost her first two teeth this summer, and her excitement about doing some Real Work has been growing daily. She has been waiting for her turn, counting off the days with great anticipation. When our boxes finally arrived on the boat, she practically drooled while she watched me unpack her new tins of beeswax crayons, her Choroi pentatonic flute, and a stack of crisp main lesson books. She has been watching her older sister get to have "all the fun" for three years now, and as such, there aren't many secrets about what is in store for her. Rather, there is just this great longing and eagerness for what is rightfully hers.
One night as I was tucking her into bed, I mildly asked her if she wanted to start school tomorrow. No pomp, no circumstance, just one of those, "Well, shall we?"
She woke the next morning glowing with happiness. Today was the day. I hadn't planned it all out, to be quite honest, but since I had some circle songs up my sleeve and some basic forms in mind, I figured we'd make it work. After breakfast she lingered at the table looking at me with big eyes. "Shall we start?" I asked her.
She was pensive for a minute and then announced, "Well, I need a bridge. And a silk cape." Any doubts I had about her being more in this world than out of it, or her ability to pay attention, were unwarranted. She happily managed to put together her own sort of graduation ceremony, from the dreamy realm of Kindergarten into the solid earth of First Grade. A runner carpet became her makeshift bridge, and with big shining eyes, she began to walk. Sunburst, ever encouraging, joined me in song, and together we sang her across the bridge.
She was welcomed with hugs and kisses. I adorned her with a golden cape and presented her with the tools she will need on her exciting journey ahead-- one tin each of block and stick crayons. From the wide smile that spread across her face and the look of complete rapture in her eyes, this was better than Christmas and her birthday combined.
Moonshine is now a First Grader. For the past two weeks she has been jumping out of bed, regurgitating circle songs all day long, and practicing her new forms at every available opportunity. It was my birthday the other day, and for my present, she proudly presented me with one of the nicest complements any homeschooling mother could receive-- a stack of practiced form drawings, our latest form, that she had done secretly and quite obviously with great care, wrapped up gently in the golden, silk cape.
First grade. And so we begin, again.