Off to 2nd grade
After 18 months of not being physically present in the school building, Oliver has returned to in person learning for school. And of course our kick off to the school year could not be without incident, lucky Ollie got to miss the first three days of school thanks to a non-Covid cold virus. Seriously, the kid doesn’t get sick for the whole 18 months he was home and then literally gets sick the night before school starts? But anyway, at long last, he got to start 2nd grade yesterday and walked into his school building for the first time since March 2020.
I have been feeling pretty nervous about this through most of the summer. We could have opted to send him back in person for the second half of the year last year but we chose not to. We hadn’t even been vaccinated ourselves yet when the survey came home asking if we’d prefer in person or distance learning and with vulnerable family members we just decided we’d prefer him staying home. He was also handling distance learning extremely well. Our school did a fantastic job with their program and he thrived. I know not everyone had that experience, but for us it worked out wonderfully. I’m so thankful we chose to keep him home that second half of the year too when he ended up breaking his arm, we were able to navigate those days so much more easily with him being home.
Eventually the school year ended and we learned that distance learning would not be much of an option any longer for this coming school year. Things were looking up with the pandemic though, all of our close family members who were eligible were all able to be vaccinated. Numbers in our area were starting to drop. Word was circulating that vaccines for kids might be available by September. So, we felt ok with sending him back. And then Delta hit and that’s where my worries started to kick in a bit.
However, after we went to meet with Ollie’s teacher and were able to physically see the steps his school is taking to help the kids stay safe, I felt a little more at ease. And hell, I couldn’t keep him from getting a garden variety cold virus not even being at school yet, so oddly that kind of calmed my nerves a bit too. It’s going to be what it will be and we will take it one day at a time.
After school yesterday I was filled with such joy listening to him talk about the things that he got to do, his excitement over simple things like having his own locker, getting to play a silly game in gym class, playing outside on the new playground at his school, being part of things with his classmates again. It really melted away any last concerns I had.
Pandemic parenting is not easy at all. As much as we’d like to keep control and keep our kids in a bubble forever, that isn’t realistic. I have to have faith and trust in my school staff and also a little faith in God and the Universe that all will be ok this year. And I believe that it will be. The joy from this kid is what will keep me going. Go get em, Ollie. You got this!