So Long It's Been Good To Know You
Avery's last day of preschool was today. It's tough stuff in and of itself, but tougher still because she was sick and didn't get to go.
We drove to preschool to pick up her things. I went in to collect them, disappointment filling me up. It seemed out of character that I'd be standing there sobbing while collecting her things because I'm a fairly reserved person. My attachments surprise even myself; I typically anticipate so many things, feeling them way before they happen. This snuck up on me.
The sadness makes me focus on the nevers. She will never leave for preschool in the morning, something for the sharing box in her hand. She will never hear Teacher Penny sing, "So long....it's been good to know you" and plow through other hugging arms to hug Penny herself. I will never pick her up again and see her beaming after a great day. She will still see friends, but never there in that classroom doing those things they did together three mornings a week.
I looked at her memory book with her once we were home snuggled up in her bed. It was full of pictures of all the things she did this year. It reminded me just how much she's grown and changed, so much more than even I realized. In each picture she's active, engaged with others, learning through her play. In each picture she seems like a special part of something special.
This afternoon Teacher Penny dropped off a few more things that we missed. Every year she gives each child a book on the last day and as parents it's so fun to see which book she chooses for your child. The one she picked is called, "I Like Me" and it reminded her of Avery and all her sides, the perky, the reserved. Teacher Penny cares for her a lot and that is clear. We got to hear more about how the last day went. Many parents with a long history with the preschool cried. Though I didn't get to share in the sadness, we are all alike in our transition away from a world we've known well. Even if we HAD been to school and particpated in the last everything, we'd still be feeling sad.
I'm mourning the end of an era, and endings in general. There will probably be a few more tears. Nursing Avery back to health will fill me up for now. Then we'll move forward toward summer and new adventures and friends, our HPP memory book tucked lovingly next to our pillow, certain songs being hummed forever.
How lucky we were to have had it.