Tuesday, February 10, 2009

First day of school

If any one faculty of our nature may be called more wonderful than the rest, I do think it is memory. There seems something more speakingly incomprehensible in the powers, the failures, the inequalities of memory, than in any other of our intelligences. The memory is sometimes so retentive, so serviceable, so obedient; at others, so bewildered and so weak; and at others again, so tyrannic, so beyond control! We are, to be sure, a miracle every way; but our powers of recollecting and of forgetting do seem peculiarly past finding out.
Jane Austen

This is today's Jane Austen quote, which I am enjoying for its synchronicity with the material I would like to write about.
My youngest daughter was up before dawn, dressed in her school uniform, and eating breakfast with her sister when I stumbled into the kitchen at a quarter to seven. And I had thought there would be some reluctance on her part in going to school today, but no! This was something S was more than ready for. She had her bag packed and ready by the front door, and asked me if I wanted to make her lunch now, or later after my shower. Hmmmmmm....
(By the way this is a stark contrast to my eldest daughter who often goes to school minus at least one of the following: bag, hat, lunch box, library books, brushed hair etc...) So this is a new era of school life for my littley and I hope that school will be a place where her curiosity and creativity are encouraged. That's pretty much my expectation of the school system.

Anyway... reading the Austen quote made me reflect on what i could remember of my first day: a smell of solvo, the warm hand of my new teacher, my mum reassuringly beside me, the scratchy fabric of my jumper, and the first game of word fish we played. I felt scared, and I think I cried. (Mum, if you are reading this, do you recall this moment?)

But then, here is my little one nonchalantly waving me goodbye and tucking into a crafty making table (helping herself to lots of sparkly pipe cleaners) with her new best friend, and I'm no longer required. Until the bell goes at 3pm.

So, if you are reading this, how much do you remember of this pivotal moment in your life?Is it a memory that you need to dredge up from the recesses of your mind, or it freshly marked 'as if it were yesterday'? your thoughts and stories are most welcome!


  1. cuuute! kids like S are so much easier! i remember my first day of school. having my photo taken down on the street near the car, shiny shoes and new dress and walking in through the school gate and seeing my neighbour hanging on her mums skirt and sobbing. i remember thinking, at age 4, what a cry baby and dont you know its SCHOOL. i had been dreaming about going to school for months!

  2. Kel, you are right; its great to have confident little kids. It was only 6 months ago (when we had just moved to Tassie) that S was the little one crying and hanging on the apron strings. Im so glad she is back to normal!
    Im dead-set impressed that you remember your first day that clearly.
    Do you still have the photo I wonder?

  3. I am worried. I cannot recall that moment. I remember my grandad taking me to kindy, but not in the first day and not to school! I remember the classroom but already full of seated kids, and don't remember my mum or dad, so I am not sure what it is that I remember!

  4. oh yes. i still have the photo, its very faded. yikes. my hair is very straight n shiny, socks to my knees and my arms are pinned to my sides like a solider. its very sweet.

  5. Ana: I wouldnt worry ...it probably just wasnt that significant a day for you, for whatever reason. You just took it in your stride!

    Kel: I WANT to see that photo!