Thursday, May 31, 2012

Warning Label

Abby has a way of charming people. It is amazing to watch. Even strangers can't help but be affected by her delightful personality, but if you have prolonged exposure to her you'd better watch out, because you just might find yourself falling in love with that little kiddo. I know you think I'm exaggerating - after all, I am her mother - I'm supposed to have an inflated sense of my kid's talents and likability, but it really is true. Take Dermyer for example.

Last year Abby was in afternoon preschool, and since it was only a half day program, and since both Jason and I work full days, Abby came to my school and spent a morning in preschool there. After lunch the bus would swing by our school and pick her up for her afternoon program. Now, since I have a classroom of students, and Abby certainly wasn't the only child her morning teachers had, Abby would hang out in our school office with "Dermyer" - also known as Mrs. Dermyer. Abby has this wonderful way of getting right to the point, and it has only been recently that she's started to ascribe the necessary "Mr." or "Mrs." to adults' names, but Dermyer was familiar to Abby in her "pre-title" days, so she will forever be known simply as Dermyer. On those mornings when Abby and Dermyer would wait for the bus Abby worked her charm to the fullest. It was not unheard of for Abby to kick Dermyer out of her chair and then command her to dance - and Dermyer would comply happily - Abby seems to have that effect on people. Oh those two had such a blast together. I know that both of them enjoyed that time in each other's company. Although it was short each day, I believe they got to know one another over the year. Their affection was mutual and dancing became their "thing". Whenever they would see the other joyful dancing was soon to follow.

This year was the first since Abby was three that she wasn't in the same building with me, and I will tell you, I had a hard time walking into that building by myself for the first  few months. The thing is, I wasn't the only one that really missed her smiling face. I had the principal, other teachers, and even parents of other students tell me how much they missed seeing her - oh, yeah, and Dermyer, of course. I can recall several conversations where we would both tear-up when talking about how much we missed having her there during the day. Now, the two of them have been able to see each other throughout the year, like at Abby's birthday party, or those odd days when I have school, but Abby doesn't, and even when Dermyer stopped by to drop a surprise off for Abby when she had the whole "finger episode", but it just isn't the same as seeing her everyday. So when I heard from Jason that he had a meeting he couldn't miss, on the same day I'd scheduled an end of the year field trip for my class that would have us getting back in town later in the day, I turned to Dermyer for help.

Dermyer not only agreed to pick Abby up from school and bring her back to her house until I got home, but she was excited to do so. She told me she couldn't wait to get her "Abby fix". Abby was thrilled too when I told her that Dermyer was coming to her school to pick her up at the end of the day. Her eyes got huge as she slowly sucked in a big breath of air - her "tell" that she is excited about a special surprise just for her.

Three peas in a pod: Abby, Dermyer, and
the adorable Miss P.
Today was the day, and when we got back earlier than I had expected I got a text from Dermyer telling me that they were good, and if there was anything I needed to do, to go ahead and do it. You don't have to tell me twice - and there were a few last minute teacher gifts I wanted to pick up, so I took off for my errands. The pictures that kept showing up on my phone told me that they were all having a blast, and I suspected that by the time I pulled into the driveway to pick her up, Abby would be finding a hiding spot - not wanting to leave. I was spot on with that. Dermyer told me that when she announced that, "Mom was here!", Abby yelled out, "No!" Typical. My little party animal hates it when Mom comes to spoil her fun. Finally, with the promise of a surprise I'd picked her up while on the field trip, we were able to herd her out of the house and into the car (still wearing Dermyer's daughter's frilly skirt - which will be returned tomorrow). With a wave and a big, "Thank you" we were off.

As I got home I got another text, this one telling me that Dermyer's daughter asked when Abby would be able to come over again. I can't tell you how much that made my heart happy, and it just proves my point - the longer you are around Abby, the more you fall under her spell. Maybe I should get some kind of warning tag to put on her clothes, something like "Prolonged exposure may result in feelings of tenderness that result in a strong attachment." Nah, it's far too much fun to watch people unknowingly fall under her spell.

So, thanks Dermyer for your help today, and for the fun that you provided for Abby. Abby summed it up the best though as she told me when we got home, "Great day, Mama. Great day."

Abby immediately made friends with the
four-legged family members. Kail girl is on
the look out.

"Have you met my new friend, Tucker? We
go way back."

Abby and darling Miss P.

P helps Abby construct a crown. It seems that
even when she is away from her "castle" she
expects to be treated royally.

Even queens can take time from their duties
to care for the smallest of subjects.
'nuff said -

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