La rentrée

September 3, 2013 § Leave a comment

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Back to school! Yesterday Sebastian began première primaire (first grade), and Xavier première maternelle (first year of preschool) at our local elementary school, École Communale Les Coccinelles–La Futaie—a day we’ve been anxiously awaiting. We all loved Sebastian’s school back in Brooklyn, and it was difficult to leave it behind. The first morning went well. Unlike in Brooklyn, where we took two subway trains every morning, we can now walk to school in less than ten minutes. When we arrived, everyone was gathering in the courtyard awaiting their new teachers. Sebastian’s teacher is young and seems very sweet. Sebastian has been brave about everything leading up to this moment, and as he walked away with his class I was filled with many different emotions—but mostly I was just very proud of him.

The younger kids then gathered in the maternelle courtyard, right next door. Xavier’s teacher also seems kind and cheerful. She speaks a little English. Xavier seemed happy to be there, and I snuck out while he was engrossed in a bin of trucks. (There may have been a few tears after I left.)

Fast forward to afternoon pickup: the crowd of parents at the courtyard gate, the excitement of hearing about the first day. Only it wasn’t exactly Sebastian who walked out, but more like a zombie who sort of resembled the fresh-faced kid I had dropped off that morning. He was holding his new friend Robert’s hand, but looked like he could barely walk. He came up to me and said, “That. Was. The. Longest. Day. Ever.” (See last photo.) I can only imagine. Good job, guys.

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