You realize pretty quickly, as a parent, there are certain things you cannot teach your child. You need other people to do that for you. If you have just one kid, this is particularly relevant. For instance, I cannot teach my kid how to get in a line, how to share toys or a lot of other skills he needs to go to school. For that, there are Pre-K teachers. Let me just say, good Pre-K teachers can be the absolute greatest thing to ever happen to your kid. I know. We had some wonderful ones.
One of those women, Ms. Francis, retired at the Christmas break. As far as I’m concerned, Ms. Francis gets to sit next to the warm cookies when she gets to Heaven. She was amazing. That Monkey did NOT want to go to school. He wanted to play with cars all day long. She just calmly redirected him back to his chair for work time. Then she rewarded him with lots of play time. She showed infinite patience for his rowdy-boy ways. If he made her want to pull her hair out, she didn’t show it.
She was his teacher when the tree fell on our house. It took a few days to get ourselves together. Making his lunch wasn’t really possible for a day or so. He refused to eat a school lunch. She gave him her peanut butter sandwich. Seriously, she gave my kid her lunch to calm him down when everything in his life was literally upside down.
Her family needs her more now than the school does. It’s time for her to stop working full-time. We’re all hopeful she’ll substitute from time to time. J LOVES to stop by her room for hugs. She will be dearly missed. Even though J hasn’t been in her class for two years, it still feels like a personal loss that she won’t be there every day.
We made her a good-bye gift. It’s a little piece of our hearts to take with her because she gave so freely of her heart to us. God Bless You, Ms. Francis!
P.S. Ms. Francis, I forgot to mention this to you before the break. But every time I saw you, you told me I’m pretty. And I know for a fact you were lying about that. A lot. I’m going to need you to appoint someone else to take over that duty at the school. Thanks!