Some mornings are easy. Maddie shrugs off her coat and backpack with confidence. She gives me a quick kiss and a hug before she runs off to join her friends. She is smiling wide as I take Katie’s hand and we make our exit. “Bye, Maddie,” I call as we step into the hallway, but she doesn’t hear me.
Some mornings are easy. Katie cannot even wait to shrug off her coat and backpack. She enters her room full of stories to share. “Miss Mick-ole, I went to the libe-erry last year and I made a kie-craper! Her told us about the tower.” Miss Nicole looks at me for a translation. “That’s right. Katie went to the library last night and made a skyscraper and learned about the Eiffel Tower.” But Katie is no longer interested in this conversation as she plays cars and trucks with her little friends. “Bye, Katie,” I call as I step into the hallway, but she doesn’t hear me.
Then there are mornings like today. Maddie stood with her coat and backpack on, looking around the room sheepishly. It seems Maddie left her confidence at home this morning. She hung onto my coat as I inched toward the door. She was unsure how to insert herself into the already-formed groups of playing kids. I tried to give her the words to use; I tried to reassure her. As I clumsily released from our hug, she remained in the doorway, her eyes willing me not to leave. “Bye, Maddie,” I called as I stepped into the hallway. “Bye, Mommy,” she answered sadly.
I put Katie’s coat and backpack in her cubby. I looked down to find Katie standing at my feet, arms outstretched. I scooped her up as I glanced at the clock. She lay her head on my shoulder. I closed my eyes for a second and pretended I didn’t have to leave. “Ready for breakfast, Katie?” Miss Nicole asked. Katie didn’t answer. I set her gently in her chair and ruffled her curls. “Bye, Katie,” I called as I stepped into the hallway. “Bye, Mama,” Katie called back sadly.
Some mornings are like today.