Dim Sum Diaries
My daughter is a very mature five year old who recently started Kindergarten. I took the day off from work so I could "see her off" and ensure her first day of school went smoothly.

In the week preceding the BIG DAY, I took her shopping for school supplies. I remember the excitement I felt when my mother took me shopping for back to school. I wanted my daughter to have that same feeling. She picked out her purple Disney Princess backpack and a Finding Nemo lunchbox complete with its own thermos. I also got some pens (do Kindergarteners need pens?), paper, pencils, erasers, pencil sharpener, a Sharpie, a folder and various other items I thought she might need. I also bought her new shoes, some new shirts and shorts. She also had a haircut. She was ready...

So on the Big Day, we made our way through the chaos of children, parents and teachers. Her hand tightly clutches mine. She carries her lunchbox in the other hand. Her backpack bounces a little each time she takes a step. When we reach the classroom, her teacher Mrs. Thompson is busy handing out "Hi My Name Is..." tags.

Perhaps I am getting maudlin. Here is the little infant I cradled in my arms, smelling of baby powder and that sweet baby scent that is uniquely hers alone. She has always had a family member (me, Hubby or her grandparents) to watch over her for the first five years of her life. Now she will be on her own. Will she make friends easily? (I sure hope so). Will she excel academically? (Of course, this is MY daughter we are talking about here). A degree of control that had formerly been in my hands is now in hers. Her personality and her upbringing will now have to kick in to help her navigate the way. She has been asserting her independence as she gets older. She decides what to wear, what type of foods she wants to eat, how she wants to wear her hair. She understands that she is now responsible for keeping track of her papers, her backpack and lunchbox.

I got a little choked up when I see her get into line with the other kids to walk into the classroom. I gave her a quick kiss and wave goodbye. When school is over and I go to pick her up, she is again walking jauntily in line with the other kids.

"So," I asked her. "How do you like school?"

"I liked it a lot!" she said enthusiastically.

"Is your teacher nice?"


"Did you eat all of your lunch?"

She gave me wounded look. That I would even ask such a question. "Of course I did, Mother," she said. I laughed at her slight sarcasm. This was the same tone I used on my own Mom.

"Is Mr. Smiley (the lunch box icepack) still in your lunchbox?"


"Did you have any problems getting the straw into the juice box on your own?"

She gave me another look. As if I had posed some lame question one would only ask a preschooler. Which she wasn't anymore, of course. "Nope."

"So did you have fun?"

She smiled up at me. "Yep!"

My little girl is growing up.