Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Hard Stuff

Kitty fell fast asleep on the couch while pouring over her memory book from school. I think we will be laminating every single page of projects and photos of her and her little classmates and finding a place for it on the boat.

I am standing in a hallway, listening to little people's voices bubbling up with excitement. They are singing and their little voices ring with the crystalline purity of childhood. I glance at the wall to a smattering of crayon colored paper ephemera crafted by tiny hands. My eyes begin to become a bit misty.

I pop my head in the doorway and tell Kitty it is time to go. She grabs her back pack, waves to her friends and bounds out to give me a hug. She is shadowed by the most angelic little girl with long blonde hair and enormously big eyes who stops Kitty and gives her a tight , tight hug. "I will really miss you Kitty" Whitney says in a solemn tone. Kitty knew this day was coming and I think it hit her at this moment. Kitty usually is one to hug her best school friend with wild abandon, this time she was stiff and still. This is when I begin to actually cry.

Kitty has had an absolutely magical year at preschool. She has been fortunate to have good friends and a wonderful, loving teacher, Miss Suzanne that she adores. A teacher who gets who Kitty is as a person and embraces her and all her quirks unabashedly. Kitty has had the gift of friendship, laughter and lots of love. I knew it would be hard as everyone else was promising to see each other next year knowing that for Kitty, this would be a final good bye.

Kitty knows we are moving on the boat and going sailing but she has no reference point for what this means. She sees us packing up boxes, selling off the extras and she knows that things will change. While she is looking forward to having a bit of an adventure, I can tell she is having a tough time letting go. I can tell this by her insistence that our boat does in fact have room for Miss Suzanne to come too. And Whitney, Sydney, Emmalyn, Grayson,Sam, Cason and there just has to be room for Temisan as well. My heart hurts for her. Goodbyes are the worst.

It's a bit easier for Maura. To be sure, she is nervous about leaving but its much easier for a techno savvy teen to keep in contact with friends via texting, email, Instagram, etc. For a little person who only knows how to read and write her first name, its a bit tougher.

So as Kitty's school time comes to an end and we get ready for the REALLY difficult goodbye to her little tribe of friends on our street, I am full of resolve. I am resolved to get this boat done and get going because to have made her make this sacrifice without a payoff and a payoff SOON is just too tough to take. There will be other friendships made Kitty. And magical experiences and discovering new places and laughing and singing too. But there will be hard things as well and I think maybe, goodbye is the hardest.

I wonder if Miss Suzanne would like to crew...


  1. Aww, poor Kittykins. The good news is that with a child who loves school as much as she does, making friends along the way will be a snap. I think parents suffer through these things more than do their children. All will be well, although goodbyes are hard. Perhaps she could skype with some special friends? Even Miss Suzanne? Imagine Kitty skyping from a land far, far away. And sending post cards to friends. So many ways to stay connected.

  2. Yes, we are making it a priority for her to stay connected. I know it will be okay and I knew this was part of the deal, it's just a tough one.

  3. Oh, I wouldn't have thought of the technology making it so much easier for Maura! Usually it's the older ones who have the most trouble! I'm teaching prek4 this year, and I'm trying not to think about how many of my kids won't be back next year. I'm so used to teaching prek three and I know that I'll at least see them in the halls. I think like half my class or more will be leaving our school for kinder. If it's any consolation, Cassie & Jared barely keep up with any of their preschool friends, and we actually live CLOSER to them now than we did when they were in preschool. So...it's a hard goodbye but so wonderful that she had such a warm and loving teacher and such a great group of kids.

  4. Awwwww, sweet Kitty! She is a light and will make bonds wherever she goes!

  5. I know you've got a teen (or teen-ish) elder daughter, but I'm wondering if you are catching any fallout from the "Rebel Heart Accusatory Committee of the Everything-is-Dangerous League".

    You know, because taking kids sailing is nearly as dangerous as taking them to soccer practice, or to the mall, or on any road.

    1. Not so much from our friends but then we tend to choose friends with IQs higher than their shoe size.

    2. A good policy. But not one always easy to maintain.