The joy I feel each and every morning I walk my twin girls to school came to a jarring halt this morning.

One of my girls gently but firmly removed her hand from mine and asked that I not sing anywhere near her or the school premises, during drop off and pick up times. What?! It felt like I had just been handed a restraining order by my 6 year old.

I can’t believe it. Our morning rituals, long established and firmly rooted on family traditions, were swiftly annulled the moment we stepped on to the school’s sidewalk.  Among behaviors no longer tolerated: No singing, no skipping, no holding hands, and, absolutely under no circumstances am I allowed to publicly speak any sweet epithets. It is unclear, but I think I have only been approved to say “Have a nice day” (without the exclamation mark.)

I am devastated. I don’t know how or why this happened but I am inexplicably sad and I am hoping for an appeal of my case. Until then, I know that between the hours of 8pm and 5am, all bets are off.

Those are peak cuddling hours.

September 15, 2009