So, Ezra started school at Presbyterian Preschool this last Tuesday. He goes twice a week (every Tuesday and Thursday) from 9:00-11:30. He absolutely adores it. My very grumpy non-morning person of a little boy turns all chipper when he has to get dressed for school. Overall, it's going really well. He loves his class, his teachers, his classroom, and the dreamed-of outside toy area he has yet to play on (it was raining on Tuesday). In our house, when Ezra's happy, we're all happy.
Now, let me emphasize that watching my little boy go to school is not the reason I cried the entire drive home from dropping him off this morning. It wasn't the fact I had only managed to slick down his cowlicks with water squirted from his sippy and not gel (darn these early-morning classes). It wasn't that he was still wearing old flip-flops instead of new school shoes (I promise I'm buying him some tomorrow, Steph ;). Nope, all those tears were over the snack-time equivalent of spilled milk. 100% whole, straight from a cow, normal milk. For snack-time today, someone's fabulous mother is bringing birthday cake. For most kids (and their over-emotional, hormonal, pregnant mommies), this is nothing but a good thing. Those kids don't have food allergies. I cried the whole drive home because Ezra won't get to have birthday cake with all the other kids. Heck, I'm still crying because of it. While I know it probably won't even be that big of deal to Ezra, my heart still hurts for him. He's never been able to have all the snacks the other kids do (at nursery, family gatherings, playgroup...) and he is usually fine with it, but still I'm sad. He knows he can't have all the food that everyone eats and will inform me that he can't eat X because it makes his tummy hurt, but still he gets bummed when watching others eat fun foods. I've always tried to minimize the differences between their treats and his-making sure he has his own cupcake at birthday parties, bringing italian ice for him at ice cream socials, giving him safe candy at Halloween, and all that. It's just the mental picture of his sad little face as they pass out the birthday cake and him understanding he can't have any, but still being disappointed at his measly pop-tart. I really, truly know this is such a little bump in the grand scheme of things and I thank heaven even night for my son's good health, without his food allergies even crossing my mind. Really, I truly try to look at his allergies in perspective. It's just that my heart aches for my poor 2 (almost 3) year old who has to watch his friends eat cake in front of him and is mature enough not to throw a fit about it. I know I can't protect him from this and that life is rarely fair, but he's just so little to be learning such a grown-up lesson. So, as is the way of mommies the world over, I'm crying over my child's pain, crying I can't protect him from reality forever, and crying because, for once, I can't kiss it and make everything all better.
Ezra on his very first day of school (August 19th). Isn't he just so grown-up!