The six-year old boy stood still before his father, not looking in his eyes as dad encouraged him on his first day of school. Stone-cold fear and uncertainty stayed in his eye when dad left and until first-day experiences banished them. San Diego U-T, 8/16/18
Phyllis and Clyde Johnson’s boy didn’t want to leave home for his first day of school. Mom stood outside in the yard, arm extended toward him, ordering him to leave. He tried to return a number of times; her stentorian commands refused his request. Off he finally went. When he returned that afternoon, an entirely new boy, he bounced in delight all over the yard and house.
Dawn’s grandson stood at the van’s door, arms dropped at his side, eyes sad before the inevitable: a new school year had begun. His puckered lips could have cried had it prevented the inevitable. Since it didn’t, he surrendered to school days. 8/18
Then there was the little boy in Lincoln, Illinois, August, 1942. He didn’t know why mom accompanied him that day as they walked from home. She hadn’t been doing that. He didn’t know what it meant when she led him into a classroom of Central Grade School. Or what mom had in mind when she talked to the teacher—Miss or Mrs. McGrath. Nothing of finality dawned on him until she finished with the teacher and turned to him, hugging him and telling him goodbye. In a terror of abandonment he threw his little arms around her legs and begged her not to go, in fact, begged to return home with her.
Whatever the year, 1942 or 2018, the first day of a school year marks a tragedy in most kids. As that little urchin in 1942 learned, however, they get over it and one day—eventually—like that little boy, learn to love learning.
Then, of course, there’s always the exception. Gene and Audrey’s great-granddaughter ws accompanied to school by her mom the first day. Not long after both arrived, the little girl proudly announced, “OK, Mom, I’m fine. You can go home.” That’s when parents suddenly realize that their child is growing UP! Indeed, that’s when parents would rather STAY than be DISMISSED.