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“Take Me With”

February 28, 2009

sunday2

Once again Selma at Search Engine Stories has given us another interesting prompt. Her prompt this week, “Take Me With You” brought back a very bittersweet memory for me. The prompt of “Loss” at Sunday Scribblings fits perfectly also. Warning: you may want to get a tissue. I’ve used several during the writing of:

‘Take Me With’

 

Nothing sounds so sweet than hearing your baby garble their first words.  I recall focusing so much time to getting my daughter to say her first word.  Kelli was such a pretty baby.  At nine pounds at birth, she was a chubby little thing with big blue eyes and dark brown hair that hung in ringlets. It was such a joy to play with her and try to get her to say words. Of course the first word I chose for her was ‘momma’.  But, of course, her first word was dadda. It seemed she went from that one word to speaking abbreviated sentences overnight. It was not long before “take me with” was her favorite saying, whether I was going to the laundry room or to the grocery store.  And I always would. I loved that she always wanted to be with me. In those first months of her being so dependent on me, I never considered a day would come when she wouldn’t need or want me to be with her. But there did . . .

Kelli was a very quick at learning. By the time she was one, her favorite toys were her books, a love that has lasted a lifetime. I would spend hours reading to her and helping her color in her very favorite coloring book featuring Micky & Minnie Mouse. The years passed quickly and all too soon the first day of kindergarten arrived. We lived in the country and Kelli was so excited to ride the school bus with the ‘big kids.’ The day before classes were to begin, I took her to orientation to become acquainted with her teacher, her classroom, and the school bus. It was so bittersweet to watch my little girl display the confidence and independence that I had worked so hard to instill in her. As her teacher was explaining to me that I was welcome to bring my daughter to school for the first few days, Kelli quickly spoke up and said she would be riding the school bus like the big kids. I couldn’t help but laugh on the outside while my heart was bursting with pride and a sense of loss on the inside.

Kelli was in the afternoon class so we were able to enjoy a daily ritual of having lunch together with her two-year old brother and then all of us would walk down the half-mile lane and wait for the school bus. She was so excited on that first day. She spent most of the morning deciding which of her new school dresses she would wear. It was a very hot late August day and I assumed she would want her long now-blond hair pulled up in a pony-tail. I assumed wrong. “Mommy, this is the first day of school. I have to wear it down with barrettes that match my dress.”  Once again the bittersweetness of her independence tugged at my heart.

After lunch, we all walked hand in hand down the lane singing nursery rhymes. As we waited for the bus, Kelli was assuring her little brother they could play on the swings when “school was over.” I had known for several weeks that I was having a difficult time accepting it was time to begin to let go of my little girl, but as I stood there watching her be the big sister my heart began to break. The school bus arrived and Kelli kissed her brother and then me, and with the strut of a runway model made her way to the opened doors and walked up the steps. She stopped at the top and turned and waved good-bye.  I smiled a big smile and waved back, whispering ‘take me with’ under my breath.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. February 28, 2009 11:19 pm

    What a lovely story Cricket and beautifully written. I felt like I was transported back in time, to my first day at school. I still remember the Dan River cotton dress (made by my mom) that I wore that day. How memories endure eh?

    Hugs, G

  2. February 28, 2009 11:55 pm

    Oh, Cricket, this is so beautifully written. Talk about tugging at the heartstrings. I can just imagine little Kelli saying ‘take me with’ and her little face looking at you beseechingly. And then to walk into school all independent….I am blubbering here. Thanks for sharing such a precious memory!

  3. March 1, 2009 6:25 am

    A poignant narrative. Those moments when we realise our children have reached a new stage are heartwarming and bittersweet at one and the same time.

  4. Seher permalink
    March 1, 2009 9:35 am

    exceptionally beautiful… thank you for such a natural sharing 🙂

    take a peek into mine at
    http://eternitycallsus.blogspot.com/2009/02/lost-without-losing.html

  5. March 1, 2009 2:20 pm

    In the middle searching old friends, found your website.Just passing by.By the way, your website have great content! 🙂

    _______________________________
    Don’t pay for your electricity any longer…
    Instead, the power company will pay YOU!

  6. DavidM permalink
    March 2, 2009 4:34 am

    Hi Cricket, I have to agree, your piece is beautifully written. I especially enjoyed its rhythmic ebb and flow, its subtly, its depth, and its humor and sentiment. Well done.
    Regards, DavidM

  7. March 5, 2009 6:41 am

    Very nice, Cricket. As mothers don’t we think that every time they leave- take me with you. Leaving seems to be part of their job.

  8. March 6, 2009 5:51 pm

    oh, so intense and deeply felt. The emotion here is so genuine and compelling – thanks for the really warm, wonderful story. So wonderful too, that you could celebrate your daughter’s independence, even though it was a type of loss for you. Really nice read!

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