1.13.2011

Breathe...

Today was a very exhausting day for me... In an instant, I am reminded of how invested I am in my "Old Lady Who Lives in a Shoe" family (me, the kinders, our cozy corner at the end of the hall). Here's why...

I was fussing around in my classroom before the children got there this morning and Mrs. Secralazy came into my classroom (sidebar- secralazy is the nickname I've given the secretary at Greener Grass Elementary cuz she takes breaks that total 420 minutes/day and manages to keep herself busy by doing absolutely NOTHING!). She informed me that a parent left a message. It was that message that made my 'World of Thurday' all kinds of topsy-turvy...
"Expressive Eyes' mother called. She said that father died and Expressive Eyes won't be in the rest of the week. Maybe not even Monday," said Secralazy.

To which I answered, "Jesus!" *pause to regroup* "Um, okay...thanks." Never in my life have I exclaimed the Father's OR the Son's name in such a manner.
My brain became bombarded with thoughts, millions of thoughts. I thought back to the 21st of December when Expressive Eyes' father wheeled himself into my classroom to celebrate with us. I thought about seeing sunshine on this little person's face when their eyes met. You could just see the love... I remembered being so excited he was there and how I wanted to make that a memory. I pulled out my handy Nikon and snapped a couple pictures... Little did I know that that moment would be included in some of the final memories and those thoughts led me down another path...

Did he know that this was going to be one of the moments that would steal some of his last breaths? Coming to celebrate with his wee one and the rest of Rm 100? Was he living the last days of his life to the fullest? Did he know? Had he spoken to God?

My tears came fast and hard. My heart ached for this little person who was going to have to grow up without the man that was the sun, moon and stars...a universe in our universe. I thought about how my innocent question to Mom last week brought a flood of tears to her eyes and had her tossing over her shoulder, "you would have to ask me that," while running down the hall.

I thought about all my conversations with Mom about Dad's condition and how it affects Expressive Eyes. I thought about the days Expressive Eyes came to school and cried in my arms or told me about headaches and tummyaches; about being afraid that he wasn't going to be there...hoping that would lead back to the path that was Dad and home.

It was so rough this morning that my hands wouldn't stop shaking long enough to prepare the children's morning work. My soul was overflowing with tears and I couldn't get them to stop. All I could think about was wanting to take some of the hurt away...

I tossed aside our daily routine and decided we would talk about this unfortunate event and do something to show Expressive Eyes that we were all hurting together.

I greeted my children with a soft voice and tears in my eyes. I still shook each little hand and said my good mornings. I thought, "I have to be strong for my students, my children, my babies." Then, I realized that my strength is visible in my sorrow-filled tears, every breath I took to move our day forward, the small smile I gave each boy and girl.

We talked about the situation and how we felt about Expressive Eyes. We spent the morning making cards that would give Expressive Eyes a little piece of all of us and hoped that our love and friendship would help heal this heart that has been left battered and bruised by the passing of Dad.

My heart, my soul, my being aches with saddness for Expressive Eyes. Even as I write this, I cry. I can't help myself. I'm crying for Expressive Eyes, for all the children that have to grow up a little faster because of life's circumstances, for the people raising these children, for everyone that has been and will be forever affected by cancer...

5 comments:

atejera said...

What a warm, heart-filled, sorrowful post. I am so sorry for your loss and for Expressive Eyes loss as well. So tragic for a child to lose a parent at such a young, tender age. Hang in there, Kesha. You have a big heart, it is clear, and time will too heal your heartache. Many prayers to you and to the family.

Bets said...

Oh my goodness. What a day!
Your words were beautiful, but I can't even imagine how you stayed so strong for the kids. You did the right thing to throw all previously planned lessons out the window and take that opportunity to talk about this event. Your students will never forget today, as they shouldn't.
Sending warm, fuzzy thoughts your way :(

Erica said...

I am so sorry! My heart breaks for the little girl and you. Stay strong!!

Nickie said...

What a sweet sweet soul you are to have the empathy you do. God be with that little one...and those that love her. Including you.

3 Guys and a Girl said...

Thanks for the thoughts and prayers. Today was better. I think writing this helped me get a handle on things. This wasn't a situation I ever thought I'd be in, but I should have known better. I signed up for all kinds of things when I decided to be a teacher...

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