Last night I made the worst lasagne I'd ever made. Luckily, Taylor was in charge of dessert and her Apple Pie was divine.
The fact that I was off my game when it came to food preparation, I am blaming on a growing anxiety I was experiencing about my little girl starting nursery school today.
Addy, looking radiant in her new coat and school shoes and with fluffy, bath fresh blonde hair, was very matter of fact about the whole thing this morning. I tried hard to keep my anxiety to myself. We had one little wobble when my older girls set off for their secondary school and college. Addy could not understand why she was not going with them. I explained that they were big girls going to their big school and she was a little girl going to a little school. She seemed happy enough with my explanation.
We left the baby at home with Ivy who has still has a few weeks before she returns to University and set off on foot for day one of Nursery school.
It was actually quite a long walk for a little girl but apart from a halfway quick carry, she managed very well.
She was interested in all the new sights and sounds as we waited in the playground for the nursery doors to open - but she held onto my hand.
As we joined the steady stream of mums and tots entering the building she stayed close to me but I could see her taking it all in.
We found where to hang her coat and we registered.
As it was her first day, I was entitled (but not encouraged) to stay for as long as I thought necessary. Most parents just dropped their children off and left. I walked Addy over to the carpet to sit down with the rest of the children and stood at the back of the room trying to decide what to do for the best.
Several children were screaming and crying and one little boy was clinging to his parents as though his life depended on it. Addy sat, slightly stiffly, on the carpet. She was clearly a little nervous but alert and expectant and definitely not unhappy.
I chatted to one of the nursery assistants who explained that only she and one other child were starting new today and if I wanted to stay I could but they are usually better once the parents have left.
I decided to leave but not without first saying goodbye to Addy. There was a danger that she would panic at the thought of me leaving her there and join the ranks of wailers still providing the soundtrack to Day One at Nursery.
I hunkered down beside her on the carpet and whispered to her that I could stay if she wanted me to but if she was happy I would leave and come back and collect her just before lunch. Her attention was still firmly focussed on the assistant currently trying to amuse her charges with a bad rendition of Hickory Dickory Dock. She gave me a cursory glance and said Ok, bye with a small wave.
The lump in my throat felt huge.
My eyes stung.
I tried to take my mind off my separation anxiety with a quick whizz around the first shop I passed on my way home which happened to be B&M Bargains and happened to have some really great little stocking fillers to break the ice on my Xmas shopping.
I started to relax.
I keep trying to imagine what she is doing and how she is feeling. I hope she will have plenty of stories to tell me about her first day at Nursery when I go and collect her. I am watching the clock. I am missing her terribly. I am also so proud of my little girl taking her first steps into a big world.