Katherine has had an unusual angst over misplacing me lately. Just today, she burst into tears when she couldn’t find me. (I was in the cellar sorting laundry.) Last week, she wanted to buy a beeper to attach to my “ankle, leg or neck”. She figures that it would be a great way to keep tract of me. She went on to further describe it as a two-way system that I could use like a walkie-talkie so I could tell her exactly where I am if need be. She’ll be starting Kindergarten in a few weeks and I think she cannot sort out her feelings. She’ll be separating from daily visits with grandma for day care and moving into life on her own.
I must say, she has always exhibited the utmost confidence and social maturity. She is usually beside herself with excitement over becoming a school kid. This new separation anxiety has really surprised me.
I can remember my first days of school being scary. What a big deal it was to leave the safety and comfort of the known! I was never good with change. There is no doubt in my mind that I would have been among those waving farewell to Lewis and Clark, not venturing with them. I still live in the same town where I was born. My travel experiences have never been out of country and hardly out of the Northeast. Once when the widening of a country road at my grandparents’ farm made it necessary to cut down rows of trees on either side, I was quite upset. The trees had delightfully echoed the sounds of tractors and the clippity-clop of the horses hooves, a familiar, welcomed experience on a hot summer day. I felt such a loss that I cried. I was about 10 and I can still hear my grandpa saying,”Susie never did like changes.”
Sights, sounds and smells were, and have always been, very precious to me. I believe I have a good memory and my devotion to sensual experiences must be an instrument of those memories. It certainly helps with my descriptions in writing and my experiences when reading too.
In my mind, a book is an “experience”. I often feel as though I am in a “fog” or waking from a dream, when I complete a good story. Even movies can leave me unsteady on my feet for long moments after they end! Yes, I do sit through all the credits in order to come back to the “here and now”.
I have every confidence that Kat will enjoy school very much. Until she adjusts, I will be mindful of her worries and we’ll talk about how she can make sense of her feelings. I see an awful lot of myself in that girl. She’s in for quite an interesting life.