“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”
– Seneca

I didn’t expect this day to come so soon. I find myself daydreaming about her first steps, her first belly laugh, her first sleepover at Nana’s house. When I sit on the floor and play with her now… I think about how she loved backing up into my lap with a book when she was two, or how she snuggled on my chest while I rocked her, or how she would play with her kitchen set for hours at the age of three. So many moments. So many milestones. So many chapters.

I didn’t realize how quickly the time had passed until I received an email about “graduation” and how it is approaching swiftly. Because I work from home, I see my littles all the time, and it’s true when they say that the days are long but the years are short. Even though she is right in front of me, I am so blessed to have been present with her every single day of her life, I find a parade of sadness marching out of my mind. I miss her being so little. But, I must embrace this new beginning and all the beautiful opportunities ahead.

When you first have a baby… you are not necessarily thinking about preschool graduation. You are too deep in the parenting trenches to look at things with a wider lens. But, remember this, as you sit and watch you little on that stage, let the feelings flow and realize that there will be so many more milestones to celebrate. First bike ride, first sleepover at a friend’s house, first crush… so many “firsts” and chapters ahead. The bittersweet milestones you will mark together are endless.

Remember the feelings you felt when they placed your little babe in your arms? Feelings of doubt, fear, excitement… and here you are. Here we all are. We did it. We made it to a milestone that has us feeling so many feelings: grief, pride, excitement, worry, nostalgia. Let us embrace the feelings and process them with those we love. Give yourself a pat on the back and a, “I think we did pretty good,” because parenthood is scary. And hard. And bittersweet. The scariest hood you’ll ever go through, haha!

So as we look to this beautiful journey ahead, let us indulge in the small moments. Celebrate the daily milestones, go slow, and embrace new beginnings. And once the preschool graduation ceremony begins, focus on your breath, like you did in the beginning of this amazing parenthood journey… and know all will be as it’s meant to be. Congratulations to you and your beautiful family on this amazing milestone!

– Jessica Smith, B.S.