Our three started school this week. Connor returned to his Asilo for one more year while Jack and Morgan started at the elementary school in our town. For them, this is the third school they have attended in the past year. As one, who save the first seven months of kindergarten, attended the schools in the same neighborhood with the same kids for the first 13 years of education that’s hard to swallow.
To be honest, it’s not my first choice for them. But as a military family there are some (okay, many) situations we can’t control and we have to make the best of those when they come our way.
For many reasons, we decided that sending the older two to the American school last year was the best choice at the time. However, our ultimate hope was to send them to Italian school as that seems to be too good of an experience to miss. About mid-way through last school year we knew that they would be moving even though it meant another transition. After meeting with the teachers and seeing the school, I knew that while it would be hard, it would be a great move.
As we prepared for school to start I asked the kids to tell me what made them excited about the transition as well as what they were nervous about.
The answer to both: going to Italian school.
Their responses really struck me. As I thought about it in the following days it occurred to me that the same can be said about most of the very rewarding experiences in life. The thought of them actually happening makes you feel excited and nervous, often at the very same time.
When Monday morning finally rolled around we were all a bit nervous. Stomachs were queasy and this mama was on the brink of tears as we walked to school. I knew this was the best decision and that it was really a once in a lifetime opportunity. I’m so excited for all three of them to leave here fluent in Italian and for our entire family to have spent our time here so immersed in the Italian life.
Yet it will be hard. It already has been.
We are now three days in and so far things are going even better than I’d hoped. There are still nerves, of course. But each day both kids walk out of those school doors with big smiles on their faces and tell me that they had a great day.
As for Connor, he too had a big adjustment. Last year. We had days when he clung to me crying because he didn’t want me to leave. Yet this year, he couldn’t get back to school fast enough. He’s nearly fluent in Italian (for a 5 year old) and he loves his teachers and classmates. That is an amazing reward.