“Now don’t cry, Gram. OK?”
That’s how my granddaughter greeted me this morning when she got up. I wasn’t crying and hadn’t planned on it, but she was referring to the moment when I watch her walk away from the car after dropping her at her bus stop. She’s perceptive, that granddaughter of mine, but so am I.
Where are you going my grandbabe, my own?
I know how tough these moments are for her, each new school year without her mother to wave her off. This morning wasn’t difficult and neither was yesterday. It was the day before. She doesn’t speak of it, but I read her like a book and see in her eyes that she misses her mother at moment like this. Despite the number of years of experience she has at this, having had to make her fist day of Kindergarten without her mother, too, it still causes a quiet chaos.
I do what I can. Last night I asked her if she would like to wear a pair of her mother’s earrings for her first day of high school. We made a special moment of it, to pick something from the few jewelry items that her mother asked me to keep for special moments. GN picked a pair to go with what she decided to wear. It seemed to settle her a bit.
Turn around and you’re two, turn around and you’re four . . .
She has a new backpack, a new lunch bag, all the supplies she needs for her classes this trimester, and somehow, a new demeanor, a little more mature than this time last year. That’s a good sign. She still asked for a special lunch to make her first day fun. That’s a good sign too. She has her priorities straight. I live for my lunch break at work, so I expect her to live for her lunch break at school. She picked what she wanted to eat and then asked me to pack a surprise treat. I did. I packed two cookies . . . the kind she remembers eating with her mother. I didn’t cry. She’s ready.
*With the indulgence of Harry Belafonte, I changed the words a bit to skip the missing generation who is not here to sing the song.