Another year over. Twelve little people all ready to go to Big School.
We sang songs this morning to the proud parents and gave out Certificates to show that they had 'graduated' from Pre-school. Presents were given. Thanks were expressed to those who deserved them. (pretty well everyone, really) A Teddy Bear's Picnic held to mark the end of term. Everyone on their picnic blankets out in our garden.
And then we all hugged good bye and wished those little people well as they trod the familiar path to the gate for the last time.
It gets me each and every year.
It might not be when the first child walks out of those gates but somewhere along the line, a mother will say goodbye, a little choked by the enormity of her child not being at Pre-school anymore, and I will be Off. Tears will well, mouth will wobble, and throat will constrict with the effort to stop blubbing.
It happened today. The very last child to go. Mother came to give me a hug and I could see that she was struggling, trying to hold back the tears. Her three children have all been with us for the last six years. Ever since we opened the pre-school. We hugged. And I was lost. Tears that had been threatening all morning finally came and I had to wave goodbye to Mother and Child with great big fat tear-drops dripping off my face, while twisting face into the biggest smile I could muster. Not the greatest look in the world.
THEN I had to walk back through the playground, where all the big children were playing, pretending that I was hugely interested in my keys. All the way back to our building.
It is SUCH a big deal, being with these pre-school children each day, and seeing them grow and learn and develop. Such a big deal to help settle the rage over a toy car, hug a sad little boy who misses his mum, read to two little girls who are exhausted from running about outside.
There are countless moments each day when I can REALLY make a difference to someone else. Each and every day. Likewise to all of the Staff. I look around our warm and sunny room, and I see them actively making a difference All Day Long. Astounding!
And when I don't go in, when I am working from home doing all the dull administration, or finally getting down to some sodding hoovering, when I finally DO get to go in, the welcome is loud, warm and loving. Hugs and cuddles demanded from all and sundry. (Mind you, the Staff hold back. Obviously.)
Can you IMAGINE that happening in an office?!
Some days us Staff feel so tired that we don't think we can be of any use to anyone. But as soon as that door opens and in come those expectant little faces, clutching beloved blankets, toys and books, all thoughts of tiredness disappear and we become utterly involved in the lives of these small people. And all the love we give them comes back ten fold. Hundred fold.
I am glad the holidays are here. To recharge some batteries and spend some lengthy time with my beloved family. But I shall miss the banter, the chat and the closeness of pre-school.
I am indeed priveleged to work in such a place. And to actually be responsible for co-running it, is something I am hugely proud of. To know that a difference is being made, because of us, because of our work, is Amazing. Not everyone can say that. But we can say it. Lucky, lucky us.
Now. Time for the holidays.
Late breakfasts. Late lunch. Late suppers.
Forgetting to book children onto tennis courses.
Forgetting to book children onto Any Courses.
God, am Crap Mother. Think will have blog called Crap Mother World.
Will fill it with tales of Rubbish Mothering and bollocks all Organisation on the Home Front.
Who will be my first follower?
You will?! How marvellous! This way then, if you please!