Dear Mrs. F_____, a letter to my daughter’s Kindergarten teacher.

Dear Mrs. F_____,

Since before my kids were born, before they were even conceived, I dreaded the day I would have to turn them over to you…. or rather the concept of you.

It’s probably pretty obvious that we didn’t just decide to get pregnant, we had to fight insurmountable odds to become dads, and while I don’t think that makes us better or worse parents, I think that anyone who has to work through infertility has a different appreciation for what it all means. And also, for me at least, it has made it harder to let go of them.

So on top of the standard first day of Kindergarten worries, we came to you that first day filled with additional fears. We had heard awful stories of homophobic / bigoted educators treating the children of our tribe abhorrently. And up until this point if my daughter were to be exposed to prejudice about who her parents are, her siblings’ skin color, her gender, or whatever, we were there to protect her.

To say we were filled with anxiety is an understatement. Turning Zoey over to you was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my entire life. I smiled and waved, feigning bravery so she would be ok, but as we turned to leave, it felt like I had handed you my soul…and was somehow supposed to walk away.

Because of who you are though, I was put at ease much quicker than I would have imagined possible. It wasn’t long until I KNEW my daughter was safe with you. I felt it, I believed it… and I could breathe. I can find no words that adequately express how much that means to us… to me.

In the 2nd or 3rd week of school Zoey was still having a hard time, and one morning she was crying pretty hard. I was at a loss and was just about to take her home. Then you offered her your hand and a smile, and instantly she was ok enough to go in.

After that she quickly went from crying in the mornings about leaving me, to crying in the afternoons because she missed you. While it stung, and I silently cursed your name, I was grateful. Because that meant SHE knew she was safe with you. SHE trusted you. And I was able to relax.

As an added bonus, I watched my daughter THRIVE this year. I have watched her fall in love with school and learning, and I have watched her confidence soar, all because of you. So from the bottom of my heart I thank you. I thank you for being an excellent teacher and an incredible person.

And next Fall, when we again turn over our babies to you and Mrs. K, just know I will still be nervous for them… I will still worry that kids will be mean, or they won’t eat right, or that they will be scared… but what I wont be worrying about is if they are safe. I will know, without a doubt, that you and Laura have them. That they are safe with you both. That all of your kids are. And that they will have an amazing year. I am so incredibly grateful for that.

So next year when I’m emailing you to see if Brody is still crying because he misses us, or if Willow knows where the bathroom is, or if they are scared, just remind me to park the helicopter. I know you got this.

With all my Deepest Respect and Affection,

Zoey’s Dad

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