Dropping off L for her first day at preschool was every bit as traumatic as I'd imagined it could be. There was screaming (and I mean full out, mega decibel screaming) for mommy and tears and snot were flowing freely, temper tantrum ensued. I told her she would have fun and that she needed to stay and play with the other children. "I can't want to! I can't want to!" she cried.
I placed her in the capable hands of the teacher and kissed her, told her I'd always come back for her and left before I could change my mind. As soon as I got into my office just a couple blocks aways, I broke down in tears. It breaks a mother's heart to know her child is fearful of something unfamiliar and can't be there to ease the transition, even if it's eventually in the child's best interest. I know she's safe and will be very well cared for, and will even come to have fun there. It's just that she doesn't know that yet.
My head knows that this is the best arrangement for everyone. The preschool is excellent. I very much like the director, and I think the teacher will be good for L, though I don't know her very well yet. I know L will eventually come to enjoy the time they get to spend on the playground, doing crafts, singing, etc. I know I will get more work done and be able to go to meetings and groups that I might not ordinarily attend now that she is not in my care full time.
It's my heart that's breaking though. I won't always be the first one to see her do new things now, or hear her conversations in "L language" with her toys and picture books.
I will update in the p.m. once I've picked her up and seen how she did. Pray that tomorrow she'll remember that today was ok. I just have this feeling...