During our vacation this year, we enrolled Sophia at a 1/2 day camp for a week with her friend Ainsley. We figured it would be good practice for pre-school coming up this Fall.
The Pennfield School is an amazing, green, grassy place in Portsmouth, RI. Ainsley goes there for pre-school during the year so she has a lay of the land. Sophia was thrilled to be spending days with Ainsley at her school and everything went great the first day. Drop off was smooth, pick up went great and she talked about playing and having fun. She also said she missed me, which was super sweet.
On day 2, I walked Sophia in to sign her in. She ran out to the playground and was looking for Ainsley, who usually arrived earlier than us (we're notorious for our lack of promptness!) I saw her over by one of the structures with 2 other little girls playing. I urged Sophia over there but she was in that middle space between me and the 3 girls. I had that small moment of panic that I could clearly see echoed on Sophia's face. What is Ainsley didn't want to play with her today, what if she blew off Sophia and just hung with the other girls? I knew Sophia would go meet some other kids, but Ainsley was her person here. I just kind of stood to see how it would shake out.
After about what felt like minutes (but was probably only 20 seconds) Ainsley looked up, ran over (with the 2 other girls trailing behind) and yelled "Sophia!!" grabbed her hand and said, "Let's go Play!" and they ran off to play.
And I took at deep breath. Images of middle school and high school had clouded into my head. I wasn't ready for Sophia to start entering girl land. I refuse to be that intervening mom and I know Sophia would have been fine and found other buddies, but I'm thankful for Ainsley and their friendship.