Tag Archives: Kindergarten

A Mother’s Love


They stoked up quite a kerfuffle right there in front of the principal’s secretary and several other parents. Angel’s thin frame shook in anger, cheekbones stabbing out through skin stretched over her hollowed-out face. She stood opposite her mother, Lilly’s grandmother, in a showdown just before the girl’s Kindergarten graduation was scheduled to begin. Two grown adults, mother and daughter, set to throw down.

Angel having been awake for 24 hours didn’t help her mental state. Her latest boyfriend kept her up the night before to sample his latest batch, which helped kindle the paranoia of her mother’s determination to get her six-year old taken away by Child Protective Services. She may not take the best care of Lilly, but she wouldn’t stand for anyone’s public criticism.

Lilly lived with her grandma, or the girl would’ve fended for herself the entire school year. Her momma might actually love her, too, but she loved her drugs of choice as much or more.

“What’s going on out here?” Mrs. Phillips rushed into the hallway at all the yelling to find the pair about to square off.

“I’ll be damned if that woman’s allowed in here to watch my baby’s program,” Angel said. “Can’t you see to it she’s kicked outta this school?” Her nose hovered so menacingly close to her mother’s that the rot from Angel’s teeth seemed the only thing keeping them apart.

The principal’s eyebrows arched, incredulous at the younger woman’s assumption. “Not if she’s Lilly’s legal guardian, Angel,” she replied. “And this altercation cannot happen here. You’re both going to need to settle down if you want to stay.” She glanced back and forth between the pair in search of any reaction to the contrary and noticed only a difference in weight and wrinkled skin between the two. Same bleached hair, same defensive demeanor. Angel might become a split image of her mother in a few years, if she lived to experience it.

Fortunately choosing seats on opposite sides the center aisle, the ceremony began without students or other audience members being any the wiser. “The show must go on, as they say,” Mrs. Phillips told her secretary. Unless someone moved out of the district before August, she’d have to deal with this kith and kin again all too soon in the new school year.

Thirteen children wearing miniature blue caps and gowns lined the wooden risers on the stage, and their families beamed up at them from folding chairs across the gymnasium floor. Cherubic Lilly grinned down from her row, and she raised a hand to wave at her grandma.

Our Write Side prompt: kerfuffle (one of my favorite words)

Photo: glasseyejack via Flickr

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Seeking solace

There are only two weeks left before I have a miniature crisis.  The thought of sending my only child off to Kindergarten is really getting to me.  He seems pretty okay with it, but I’m headed for a breakdown.

Maybe it’s about getting old, but – hell – I’ve been old for quite some time.  More likely it’s about him not being my little boy any more.  I never imagined myself having these feelings.  But it’s not about me.  He’s starting a new adventure in his life.

A great blogger over on Daddy Knows Less  is celebrating this time period with a “One Last Summer as My Baby” tour.  I wish I could easily adopt his glass-half-full attitude.  My son and I have spent several days at the pool this summer and bonded over throwing the squishy ball and games of “What Time is it Mrs. Whale?”  (No cracks about the Mrs. Whale thing … it’s not me.)  We’ve also gotten to know every character on Sunday afternoon repeats of Call of the Wildman and Gator Boys.  There are some very in-depth conversations about the length of snakes and Turtleman’s uncanny ability to smoke a groundhog out of a hole.  He’s decided he wants Jeremy Wade’s job and his ability to catch River Monsters.

photo – m19.com

Now that I’ve admitted how my t.v. obsession is being passed down to the next generation, I must say how much I’ve loved our time together this summer.  He’s a great kid, is so amazingly funny and sharp, and I’m glad we get to have our own last hoorah before school starts.  Little guy and I are soon off in a plane to visit my sister in California.  They talk on the phone quite a bit, but now it’s time for them to do their bonding, with me along for the ride.  My little wildman gets to see a new part of the world, with its own sea creatures and curiosities.  One of my hopes for him is that he’ll see many places of great wonder in his lifetime.  He is so inquisitive and vibrant, he’s sure to seek out his passions everywhere!

I’m savoring every last moment of him being not quite old enough to think I’m lame and not want to talk to me around his school friends.  Maybe I’ll feel better about it all when I see that he’ll be okay on the school bus.  A tiny little crying baby is now the great big boy I wished he was when he was colicky.

Never wish those moments away.  They’re gone before we know it and the time is still bittersweet.


Filed under life