Today I went on a field trip with Moose and his class to Willoughby Farm.
Back when he was four and five years old and in the Early Childhood class at his school, I went on field trips in the fall to one of our local apple orchards. It was a lot of fun, and I was glad I had the chance to go with him. I noticed, though, that he would only spend time with me on those trips, and not with his class.
Because of that, I made a hard decision when he was in kindergarten, first, and second grades not to go on any field trips with him. It was hard for two reasons. First, because his trips in those grades were to bigger, busier places like the St. Louis Zoo, and I was worried about everything…him getting lost, or being overwhelmed, or just being miserable. It was also hard because I wanted to be able to share those experiences with him. But, I thought it was best for him to go without me, to force him outside of his comfort zone, and make him spend time with other people. I had to let him go.
Now, though, after an especially successful field trip last year where he not only had fun, but also conquered a fear, I feel like I can go with him. And he specifically asked me to attend, so I happily told his teacher I would be there. And it was a lot of fun to spend the day with him, watch him learn, and see how he interacts with his peers.
There was a time when I needed to let him go, for his own good. But I’m very happy that time has passed, and I can be a fun field trip mom, and spend a day with him!