Last Things

He’s missing all the lasts.

Last spring musical (and many associated events with that).

Last student council events and meetings.

Last lunchtime pick-up basketball games with friends.

Last day of class.

Last school picnic.

I’m normally not into the graduation sign thing, but given all the last things he’s missing, I ordered the sign this year.

This afternoon, for possibly the last time, I exceeded the speed limit on the school’s back driveway to pick up that sign for my front lawn.

Normally I’m not very sentimental, and I tend to shy away from social events associated with school, but I’m feeling sentimental today.

He’s my last kid to attend this school, and he’s made the most of his time there. He’s lived through a total reinvention of the school when it became an independent Catholic school in June 2018. He took on a leadership role in the student council and played the lead in the spring musical last year (and was supposed to do that again, before the coronavirus brought the students home from school and effectively closed down the stage).

I am hoping that the prom and graduation (now scheduled for midsummer) will get to take place, so these 52 kids who have been through a lot will have the chance to properly say goodbye to each other.

As for me, I may have said my goodbyes at 40 miles per hour in the back driveway this afternoon. Just in case I don’t get the chance to do so this summer.

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Rainbow over the back of the school, April 2016. Copyright Barb Szyszkiewicz. All rights reserved.

Reelin’ In the Years

Middle Sister had four of her friends here earlier, and they were all lining up to primp in front of the bathroom mirror before I drove them to the football game.  As she left the room, one of them asked, “Is there a guitar pick in your bathroom?”

She never asked about the Army Guy, who stands only about an inch away from the guitar pick.  He’s been guarding the bathroom for at least 3 years now–possibly more.  It’s been so long that he’s part of the landscape, and when I clean the bathroom I just put him back on the counter, in the same place he was before.

Sure, it would be easy enough to carry the Army Guy over to Little Brother’s room.  It’s only across the hall.  For that matter, I could just toss the Army Guy in the trash can.  Earlier this week, I cleaned out the family-room closet and toy box, and boxed up all the Army Guys along with the other stuff Little Brother no longer uses.  My guess is, he’ll never notice it’s gone.  After a suitable interval, I will donate the usable toys to our school’s pre-K or Goodwill.  (Tuesday’s good.)

I can’t get rid of everything, though.  When I pulled the battered copy of The Very Hungry Caterpillar off the bookshelf, there was no way I was putting that into the donation box.  The same goes for the entire “Little Critter” series (Middle Sister was a big fan) and The Little Engine That Could, which we memorized during Big Brother’s childhood and hid during Little Brother’s.  We just couldn’t go down that road (track) again.

Some people have scrapbooks, all beautifully decorated and labeled, full of photos of their kids.  I’ve got their entire libraries, as well as a few Army Guys, Matchbox cars, and an American Girl doll.

“The things you think are useless I can’t understand…”