09 April 2015

Reia's First Day of Kindy!

I have been nervous this whole week leading up to this day. Just the thought of her being away from me makes me anxious. It is also the start of years and years of schooling! We have been together for 3 almost 4 years now so naturally I am anxious/sad/happy all at the same time!

We have been preparing her mentally for this day for months. Ever since we went in to the school for meetings and viewings we have been teaching her what she will soon be doing in a few months time. At first she was very scared. I would tell her about the bus and she would ask if I was going too. I would say no and she would reply "But Reia cry for Mummy." Things stayed like this for about 2 months. It was only until about a month ago that she started to see that youchien (kindergarten) could be fun! We went in to the school last month to pick up her school supplies and uniform and I think from then, she started to become more excited about the idea of youchien. Seeing her uniform, classroom, her classmates etc. helped her to get ready for her first day on the school bus!

Yesterday, April 8th 2015, was her Entrance Ceremony (入園式). Out of all the days of the week it had to be the day that snowed! Snow in April is very rare to see in Tokyo. I have never seen the sakura paired with snow before! It was very cold. We went by taxi and arrived to see all the little kiddies in their uniforms and eager parents filing into the school grounds. The youchien has completely been done over and has new classrooms, buildings, pool, and playground. Her class room name is Sumire 4-Kumi which means Viola-Class 4 (viola being the flower). We went into her classroom and found her personal mark to identify her cubby and places to put her things. It is a peach! We put her school things in her cubby hole and were told to take our kids to the toilet as they may become nervous and wet themselves. Reia had just gone at home before we left so I wasn't worried about her. I asked her to see if she needed to go and she said no, so I naively left it alone. The parents were then told to go wait in the hall so that the children could file into the hall in their classes. Reia's face was a little unsure but she didn't cry. She actually led her class into the hall and sat in the first chair, front row. She kept turning around to find us and smiled and waved. Aila was all over me trying to get me to hold her. Quite hard when you are trying to take photos. At the ceremony, they introduced the teachers and the already attending students sang two songs which was beautiful. I got a bit teary because of the song and how cute they all were!
They sang the school song and 100%勇気.

After the ceremony we went back to the classroom to meet the teachers. I was looking for Reia amongst the kids but she wasn't there. I got a bit nervous so I stepped out to see if she was in the bathroom and as I neared, she walked out with a teacher who said that Reia didn't make it. Ahhh. Even though she asked her teacher to go to the bathroom like we had been practicing for months, she didn't make it to the toilet. Oh well. Hopefully she learns not to hold it and just go when she needs to! She wore the youchien's spare clothes after that. Reia has two teachers. Hina sensei and Chisaki sensei. They received a green paper bear necklace, an origami case and a new book! We took a few photos, asked the teacher questions and then went out to eat lunch. We had pizza and pasta at our local Buono Italian restaurant.

Today (9/4) was her first official day. She had to catch the bus and go by herself. It is only a half day so I am anxiously waiting for 12:30 to come! We have been reading the youchien books for weeks now so she knows what to do. We woke up, brushed her teeth, had a sandwich, got dressed and we went down to wait at the bus stop. She told me "I'll see you tomorrow, Mummy!" I knew she would be okay. The whole time she seemed happy and knew what what was going on. There are a few other kids that get on at the same bus stop, but none her age. They are all 2nd year. She was very happy to wait for the bus. When the bus came, she became very quiet but followed the other kids on to the bus. The teacher on the bus put her next to a girl in the same apartment building as us. She looked at me through the glass and waved but didn't smile or cry or do anything. I could tell she was unsure about what was happening, but just went along with it. As the bus pulled away and took my first born baby with it, I couldn't help but shed a tear!! It marked the start of the end. The end of being with me all day every day, but also the start of new adventures, new things learned, and new friends. 

It is only 10am now. I have another 2 and a half hours to go until she gets back! I have decided that I will start making her bento boxes during this 2 week half-day period so that she gets used to it and will be okay by herself at youchien. I will make her a Youkai Watch bento today!


She came back! I was there waiting for her when the bus came. She saw me and made a bee line straight for me and bear-hugged my leg. She didn't cry, but her eyes were a bit wet looking so I knew she was relieved to see me. But she did so well! The mums at the bus stop were very impressed. She said that she sang songs, ran around, and played with Pokemon toys but had to put them away. She asked if it was bento time/lunch time because that's what is written in the youchien book we read at night. I whipped up something quick and she loved it. She doesn't like to flavour her rice with furikake so I left it plain and she asked for more.

She can't wait to go back tomorrow!


  1. Ahhhh, Reia is growing up! I am cryinggg, hahaha. I can't wait for pictures!

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  5. What a Champ. She's got the peace sign mastered. Looking small but confident in the crowds.

  6. Dani- That was well written and insightful. You mirrored the feeling every parent goes through the first time they have to leave their child at school for the first time. I don't know who goes through more stress or uncertainty, the child or the parent. It reminded me of the first day we took our children to school for the very first time. You have to emotionally let go but it sounds simpler than it really is. Of course, this was your very first experience at it but it doesn't get any easier when you have to do it all over again with your next child. I really enjoyed reading about your experience and Reia's. She is so cute in her little uniform. :) Well done again Dani. :)

  7. Happy Mums day Dani! (In the U.S.)