Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Blindside

It happens every year.

Just like the last shopping day before Christmas, or the psycho killer showing up the second the hot girl takes off her shirt, it always catches me by surprise. I know damn well it's coming, but then, every time, it blindsides me.

The last days of school.

You're right if you think the teacher is counting the minutes until that last kid is ushered away, heading off for a summer with mom or dad or the nanny. A summer with anyone but me. I am counting the minutes, and each one is a little harder than the last. Each one pushes me just a little closer to the brink.

I never know what exactly will be the tipping point, what will throw open the valve and unleash the tears I've been pushing back for days. Yesterday it was my little Latina child. She was working on her Pre-K Memory Book, documenting for posterity all the things she liked best about school. When we got to the teacher page, I prompted her to come up with an adjective to describe me. But she didn't quite understand the concept.

So I said, "What do you like about me?"

She looked me in the eye and said, "You heart. I love you heart." And then, a split second before I curled up and died, she added, "And you hair."

This is one of the other children I have to say goodbye to. Look at that face, and tell me how.

Tomorrow is the last day.

Send me luck. Or vodka.

1 comment:

Jenn A-G said...

Ah, made me cry. Those kids are lucky. Thank you for your work.