The beginning of this school year marked an important first for mom Tara McAdoo.
"My daughter began kindergarten at Riverside Elementary," McAdoo said.
Even though McAdoo has been down this road with her sons, she said she can hardly believe how quickly this has happened again.
"I look back at my boys and it seems like they were just in kindergarten, and now they're in the eighth grade. It's hard to believe that Makayla's going to school," she said. "I'm just really trying to take it all in."
Even if mom wasn't quite ready, Makayla didn't have any problem getting things ready for her big first day.
"She packed her backpack a long time ago," McAdoo said.
Three weeks before school started, to be exact.
With Makayla's entry into school, McAdoo said, "This just really lets me know that time flies. I'm happy in one respect, and I'm sad in another. But it's just a part of her growing up. She's not a baby anymore."
Makayla did attend Pre-K last year and that helps McAdoo feel a bit more comfortable in Makayla transitioning to a longer day of weightier curriculum at school.
"I think she's prepared to go," she said. "I just want her to be on track with her peers, and I pray that she will do well."
Watching a child grow up and letting them grow into new things is something that Pat Henderson, mom of Gerard Henderson, also understands.
Gerard is a seventh-grader at Columbia Middle School.
At a time where it can be easy to buckle under peer pressure, Henderson hopes that her son will continue to make great strides in defining his individuality.
"Gerard has already shown that he's a leader, and by leading I mean being an example for his classmates that when certain things are going on, you don't have to take part in them," she said. "I want to see him continue to mature and to realize that school is an important part of his life."
Back to school also means back to more challenging subjects for Gerard.
"He's already talked about how hard things are going to be this year," Henderson said. "But I've reminded him that he just has to work hard and he can do all things through Christ."
The beginning of this school year also marks a significant milestone for Dr. Margaret Renew and her son Zach, a senior at Greenbrier High School.
Renew said this year is all about shifting more responsibility to Zach.
"I didn't even buy school supplies. We had some things left from last year, and I told him to go through his list of things to figure out what he needs and go get them," Renew said.
"My husband and I didn't go to the school, because as they get older, they don't want you as involved. We reviewed his class schedule and felt good about his choices, but we let him take it from there," she said.
Renew said that beginning the school year this way will help Zach better handle what comes afterwards.
"He's on his own this year. I felt a little negligent, but at the same I felt it was important for him to learn to take care of himself and be responsible for himself. Because next year, that's what he's got to do. Nobody's going to be holding his hand," she said.
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