[Chit-Chat] Our first baby is not a baby anymore – his first day of school.

September 02nd, 2021 – this is it. This is the first day of school, for our first baby. It was so stressful, we had no idea how it will go and it was a place we did not know.

Back in June, there was an « open » day when we were allowed to come in to visit the class, meet the teacher, the lady who helps the teacher and there were few activities available. It had gone very well. In fact, they both loved it! I think that day helped me feel less stressed for today. The city we live in, is my hometown but this is not the school I used to go to when I was a kid so it was 100% new for all of us.

The thing that stresses me the most about school is how I’m going to manage to take my kid to school in the morning. I never said that on the blog, but I’m agoraphobic so I don’t live my house on my own nor with just my children. I’ll write about my agoraphobia one day on the blog, but I’m not ready to do so … yet.

As I said, taking my child (next year both of them…) to school is what stresses me the most. Because I know school is going to be amazing for him, he’s going to learn so much and finally meet some kids his age and that’s so important. Also, the fact that we met the teacher few month before the first day of school helped as well to feel fine. I was still a bit stressed and anxious, because he has never been without me, without his sister (his dad as well but he’s in work so it’s different) or any members of the family since he was born as I never needed to put him (or any of them) with a childminder or in any place that take care of children. So yes, I was scared he would cry and refuse to let us go. Also he’s not very good with changement. At all … And that’s a big one. Oh and did I mention, this little one doesn’t want to leave his bed before 10:20 am ? Yeah i know! A dream for every parents!

So anyway the alarm was set for 07:15am (I woke up at 07:14, typical!) and when I went to get him he was already awake and so happy to get up. His little sister though… yeah no she was still asleep and did not enjoy being woken up bless her! They both got downstairs had their breakfast, brushed their teeth, washed their face, got dressed and then they had a quiet and chill time before we had to leave the house at 08:15am. The school is very close to our house (05-10 minutes walk. Let’s say 10 minutes because they were both walking).

When we got to the school, both of us were allowed in the class which was super amazing and reassuring. We received an email few days ago to let us know, but with Covid everything is always so unsure! So we got in the school, it was so cute as he was waving at everyone saying hello (the little one was more shy, which is very funny because he’s normally the shy one). We arrived in the class, gave his things (we had to bring a pillow for the nap, his mouse, a box of tissues, a pack of wipes, slippers and some clothes.) we were given the notebook that connects us to the teachers – this notebook was full with papers to fill. Then we went back into the main room, and there were lots of activities ready for the children. Both of them sat down at the play dough table. We stayed for like about 5 minutes – maybe less – we realised he was fine, so I gave him a quick kiss waved bye and we left. I don’t even think he realised we did. When we left the class to get back to the main door there’s a little path and so you can see the playground and his class so we saw him looking around. We quickly left so he wouldn’t see us. We did not want to make it hard.

It was crazy but all the children were so excited to be there, none of them cried. (Maybe after we left, we don’t know, but when we were there we saw none of them cry) and it’s amazing. And so much easier then for all of them.

The morning went by very quickly. I filled all the papers, went to get the school insurance paper (yeah who’s been thinking about it for months but forgot about it ? Me, of course!) and it was time to get back to school.

For this first day of school he was in only in the morning. His class his a double level (is that how you say it ?) so it’s few children his age and few children from the year above. The headteacher explained that they do it like this so it’s easier for the new children to adapt as they are with older kids who are used to the classroom, the teacher, the life in school etc. But they still have work for their age. They only share the same teacher and same room. So this is why he had school only in the morning, because this afternoon it’s the other children who are going in. Tomorrow though, he will be going back to school after lunch.

In France, it’s only been a few years since school has been made mandatory. So now you have to start school at 3 (or 2.5 if you were born between September and December) and you have to nap in school. Few years ago, school was mandatory only at age 6 and for the first year of school (3) you did not have to put your child back to school for the nap.

So anyway, 11:30am the school opens and the teacher comes out the class with one of her pupil. And guess who she had in her arms, crying? Yes of course you guessed it! Oh my god I was heartbroken, I started feeling so panicky and anxious. And as someone who doesn’t like being seen well, …. The teacher opened the gate and went back to her class and she was like “Any chance L’s parents are here ?” So people let us go in quickly (so sweet) and she let him come to us. Bless him.

She reassured us. She said it went amazing all day until the last five minute, when he started to ask for Mimi! Mimi … is mouse (he’s got two. He’s not allowed them in school, just for the nap). Obviously the teacher did not know who he wanted. So she carried him everywhere to keep him busy and comfort him. We said goodbye but he said no to come back tomorrow ! So I think tomorrow is going to be a fun one for me! … wish me luck.

This is Miffy (Mimi) and yes there are two! 🐭

To say I wasn’t stressed would be a lie, because I was so stressed and anxious. But honestly I know there’s no choice, and it’s going to be amazing for him!

Being stressed his normal, but when I think about it it’s crazy because we – the parents- are the only one stressed as when it’s their first year they actually have no idea of what’s school is (well mine had no idea, anyway). I’m so excited to see how the year is going to go, how much is going to learn (and his sister as well, because she follows him everywhere and does everything he does.) and see him grow.

I wish I could keep my babies so tiny, and so well babies but I guess it’s the same for most parents but we have no choice, they have to grow up.

Every countries are different so if you are interested to know, over here school is from Monday till Friday with Wednesday off – from 08:30 till 11:30 and then 13:30 till 16:30. When I was a kid we did not have school on Wednesday but we had school on Saturday morning, so glad it’s over now!

This post is a bit messy, I’m so sorry. Until this morning I had no idea I would be writing this post. But I felt like writing all this down, and thought it could be nice to share.

I hope yours or your child(ren) first day of school went amazing! Let’s start this new year. 🍂

Let me know if you like those kind of post, and if you have any questions about school in France.

Morgane. x

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