School started this morning. Lucy and Bayla were thrilled. Mark was melancholy. And I was chopped, tossed and tongue-tied by the schoolyard full of parents. Stepping into that sea of smiling excitement knocked me flat. I can't think. I can't smile. I don't know where to look. Where to stand. My brain goes blank. I say stupid things. It feels like I'm in a blender. There were great friends in that crowd. And faces that maim me at the best of times. Both bowled me. Sure, it's all in my head. And I should probably ground myself, breath, repeat some mantra. But it takes me by surprise. I'm suddenly whirling and sputtering. And blank. But I survived. And today's the first day of my first school year as a free-all-day mom. I've got bon-bons to eat. I'd better get to it.