People might scoff at kindy graduations but the milestone is enough to bring tears to the eyes of many parents.
People might scoff at kindy graduations but the milestone is enough to bring tears to the eyes of many parents.

Time takes on new meaning as a parent

SO I blinked and it’s December. People always laugh and say ‘I know, right?”

But seriously, I want to grab them by the shoulders and shake them, shouting “what year is it?!” like I’m Michael J Fox.

It’s giving me a right stomach ache. I’d get up from my desk for a chamomile tea, but I might come back and find it’s Easter.

There is a slight chance I’m overreacting. Largely due to the fact that I am staring down the barrel of my youngest child’s kindergarten graduation ceremony.

Scoff if you must. I certainly did at my first “kindy grad”, thinking ungraciously of society’s apparent need to celebrate mediocrity.

But from my uncomfortable position on a toddler’s chair, my cynicism gave way to snorts and tears as my first born came out in his cap and gown, receiving his certificate and singing some Peter Coombs to us sniveling parents. Tragic, huh?

But if you’re a regular, you’d probably suspect I’m prone to sentimentality already.

So it’s little wonder I’m wigging out about my youngest leaving the safe, happy cushion of a kindergarten play room to embark on the wilds of primary school.

And I haven’t even got to the scary party yet. That first born who initiated me into motherhood is leaving the wilds of primary school for the hellish landscape of high school.

When did this happen?! What year is it?! Is this the true trap of parenthood? That time marches on and we run behind them picking up their bottles, then their lego, then their...? I don’t even want to know.

It seems just when I nail a chapter in parenting, the small humans I’m raising are at the starting blocks of the next event, and I have to start all over.

Parenting ought to come with a manual, a free annual holiday and a hoverboard to keep up with our sprogs.

I guess the beautiful thing is that, for me, I experience these milestones three times over.

I know I’m going to be an emotional wreck this time round. The kindy director has said she will have tissues on hand. And my older children get to watch their little sister take the steps they took years ago and graduate from a life of babying, into their world.

Just don’t grow up too fast, babe. It only gets faster.

Peta Jo is an author and mother of three.