for the love of new beginnings

It’e been an emotional week thus far for the Armstrong family. Preston attended his first day of Pre-K yesterday and we’re working through all sorts of feelings about it. He’s a big boy and emotionally ready for school. He craves intellectual challenges and interaction with kids his age. We chose a school we’re confident will suit his needs. We’ve attended several school related events, introduced Preston to his peers, and have done our best to prepare him.

I learned that my heart cannot be prepared fo the challenges that come with watching one’s child grow. It hurt for a moment as I watched him walk away. Knowing that he’d be surrounded by temporary strangers (but hopefully – eventual friends), a little confused about what was ahead, and wondering what his mommy, daddy, and best friend Cameron were up to.


Preston was tired and Cameron was clinging to him as usual. It didn’t seem odd to me but once Preston entered the building Cameron’s little lower lip began to quiver and it broke my heart. She wanted to be with her brother.


Big life events always trigger the internal mother versus photographer struggle. I want to do what I love most but I want to enjoy special moments with those I love most. I handed the camera to my husband but forgot to remove a polarizing filter I’ve had chilling on there. Don’t care. I love this photo.

It tells you the day’s story.

Preston: trying to make Daddy laugh. Cameron: trying to crack a smile despite her sadness over her buddy leaving. Me: excited and hopeful but shocked that I’m here.

How am I here? I’m a mother to two amazing little people. People! Not babies.



More clinging and concern. Poor Cameron was confused and out of sorts. She said she wanted to go to school with her big brother and all her girlfriends like she does at church. She’s so social. Her favorite thing in the world besides her messing with her brother is meeting friends – girlfriends – wherever she goes.


His face. Handsome, hopeful, and sweet. While I know this experience will be good for him it is hard letting go. Putting my faith in the hands of virtual strangers and handing over my baby was difficult. I’ve done it before but it’s different now. It’s for good. He’s a big kid. He’s in school for many years. He will never be a tiny baby wriggling around on my lap.


I let him go. I let his daddy take him to the classroom where new friends, adventures, and pursuits await him. As difficult as today was it reminded me of the gifts becoming a mother has given me.

Preston has made me a better person. He has a way of doing that. He is so wonderful you can’t help but want to be your best for him.

Watching Cameron become emotional over losing her buddy for a few hours made having them fourteen months apart worth it. They’re best friends.

What more could I ask for?

Next up in the blog circle is the incredibly talented Melissa.

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  1. Oh my! Luckily my little girl’s preschool is done at the daycare we have her in but next year, when she starts Kindergarten? I will be a blubbering mess. It will be terrible! How do we do it as moms??

  2. Sigh. Why do they grow up so fast?

  3. Aw! It is tough sending our babies out into the big bad world. It’s tough on mom and tough on the little siblings, too. I have the saddest picture ever of my middle son when big brother rode off on the school bus for the first time. My littlest is in for it next week when school starts and both of his playmates leave him in the dust.

  4. Today was our first day of first and fourth grade, counting down the minutes til I pick them up! You captured the excitement and anxiety over the first day so well!!:)

  5. oh my goodness, I can just imagine it. Been going through something similar with my son starting preschool. It’s just been he and I for all this time and now he’s going on new adventures… I love hearing about them and seeing him blossom and yet I can’t help feeling a little sad that he’s heading off without me. It lessens everyday but that first day was rough. 😀

    It’s sweet to hear about how close your two are. They grow so fast! I’ve missed reading your posts so glad you’ve been able to! Hope you’re settling in to the new job and home well!
    ajira recently posted… If you must… fear the unexplodedMy Profile

  6. The part that got me the most when Donovan started preschool was that it was The Beginning of Many Many Many Years of School. Like, from that year on he’d be in school for the next decade+ of his life. Which felt like WHOA. But it’s hard to let go, but also so cool to see all the things they learn, and the friends they make.
    Marcy recently posted… just keep swimming…My Profile

  7. I love the story you are telling with your pictures… A lot of emotions, you can actually feel it!
    Nina recently posted… Deception PassMy Profile

  8. I understand exactly how you feel. I had a moment like that this morning and my son has been in school since Monday and my daughter, this is her second week and I’m still shedding tears here and there. I remember when they were babies. This is just too much for me.
    Carla recently posted… School’s In Session x 3My Profile

  9. Can’t stop thinking about it so had to come back and say what I really wanted to say- please tell us how you’re settling in, what your new home is like, what are the kiddos up to and how’s the new job? How do you like being a working away from home mom vs stay at home or work from home? Just miss reading your thoughts on everything. 😀
    ajira recently posted… 30 second dance party!My Profile

  10. You kind of made me cry! I’m so not ready for K to start preschool this week! I hope you all are adjusting well!

  11. I’m right there with you! Little Man just started kinder and his sister was more excited about going to school after she met his teacher. She was beyond sad when we put little man on the bus and she had to stay behind. I had no idea your kids were 14m apart mine are 13M lol I agree best thing about being close in age is having them be best friends! It was so hard to let him go but i’m happy with how sweet his teacher is and that kinda made things a little easier for me. He was just anxious to be a big boy and ride the bus lol. Thanks for sharing and letting me know i’m not alone.
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