Every time I walked away from the glass window taking a final glimpse of my daughter at her Performing Arts Camp this week, I was instantly brought back to my own childhood. My four year old, Sj, started a new camp this week. It's run by amazing artists and I secretly wish, I was being dropped off for two and a half hours to relish and bask in my own creativity. But instead, I am giving my daughter the gift of such opportunity.
The first day of camp, we arrived a bit early. Assessing the space, peering in through the glass at the teacher's preparing for the kids, and taking in some art that is on exhibit filled our ten minutes to spare. When the doors finally swung open, Sj ran into class, introducing herself, and quickly found a chair at the table that was full of her peers. She didn't know a child in the room, but it didn't seem to phase her. I on the other hand, was a bit timid, hoping she would make some friends and feel comfortable on her first day.
After I kissed her on the forehead goodbye, she quickly returned to decorating her name tag with markers. She was drawing a picture of herself, next to her name.
I glanced back once, but she was consumed. The transition was amazingly seamless.
When I was a young girl, I went everywhere with my mother. We were inseparable. Grocery store, errands, department store fitting rooms, bedroom, doctor appointments, kitchen, I was her shadow. I remember taking swim lessons when I was about 6 years old and being worried that she would just drop me off. I would question her on the entire car ride to the lessons, about her staying or leaving. I can even recall one day, my mother slipped out and feeling so scared in the pool, as if I had been abandoned. Honestly, how long is swim class, 45 minutes tops?
I love my daughter's independence, but sometimes it makes me nervous. Obviously the decisions we've made in raising her has given her the confidence to take on new situations with ease. Now, I wonder about her sister,GL, given the same parenting styles, boundaries, how will she take on new situations? Time will tell.
One more glimpse of my little girl through that glass and I see into the future, see her growing up so quickly before my eyes, where does the time go?