They walked through the front door with heads held high, victorious yet emotional. Stylish purses hung on the shoulders where faint memories of diaper bags still lingered. Faces were fully made up, complete with mascara and lip-gloss; skinny jeans with silk shirts replaced the yoga pants and t-shirts with spit-up stains of years past. These moms just dropped their babies off at their first day of kindergarten and emotions were running high. Some moms were teary because the time went too quickly while others had just launched the last of a string of children and looked forward to those few hours a day to regroup and plan their next season of life.
But they came to raise a glass and celebrate that quiet milestone that every mother eventually reaches – the transition from the toddler years of pull-ups and Sippy cups to confident school-aged children who can pack their own backpacks and tie their own shoes, and, if we are lucky, will still give their mamas a goodbye kiss before getting on the school bus.
So we toasted with mimosas, feasted on croissants from the local French bakery and the first of the season’s figs that signaled the transition from summer to fall. We laughed, we cried, we hugged, we high-fived and we remembered how precious the time is with our children. These last five years may have seemed long, but in five more years they won’t need their mamas nearly as much as they need us today – five more years, and they will be driving, and five years after that they will be gone – adults who take the time and love that we have poured into them and are charting their own courses in life.
Mamas, I raise a glass to you today. Whether you are sending your youngest ones to kindergarten today or launched them decades ago, we celebrate you and the sacrifices that you have made to raise your babies well.
For a no-frills, classic mimosa recipe, click here.