"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard."
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
This week we said goodbye to Emma. She was with our family for a very short time over the summer but we immediately loved her. The boys both adored her. Rex loved that she loves sports. He could talk football and basketball with her and she plays rugby so that makes her a hero in his eyes. Riley loved that she got down and played, really played, with him. They read stories and wrestled and had a ton of fun sang songs and just had fun. Originally we thought she would be with our family just through the summer but as things turned out she was able to go kindergarten with Riley. It was perfect because we knew she had a expiration date so to speak. She was headed off to Japan to teach in mid October so it would force a conversation with the school before we brought someone else on board and so we thought we'd be able to reduce the amount of help that Riley needed at school. We were all shocked with how well Riley transitioned to school and how quickly we were told that he didn't need to have someone with him at school. Yea for Riley! bad for Emma. Unfortunately that meant that we had to say goodbye to Emma a bit sooner than we had planned.
Emma hasn't been to school with Riley for over a week but he still asks for her everyday. He says to me "you go car mom Emma come stay me" and we go through the entire thing again. No Riley you are a big boy now and you get to go to kindergarten all by your self. He seems OK with that explanation and gets excited about school again. Often he asks for Emma and tells me that I'm staying home and he is going to the park with Emma. On Wednesday we had talked about Emma coming over for dinner and he must have asked about it 100 times between the time I picked him up from school and the time she arrived. Total joy when he finally spotted her out the window and ran to open the door. He greeted her at the door and drug her to his room to play. He was filled with joy because his EMMA was there to play.
As Riley stood on the steps and waved to Emma at the end of the night it was very clear that he didn't understand that she wouldn't be returning. There won't be any trips to the park since Emma is headed to Japan for the next year. There is a unique dynamic when a child says good bye. There isn't really the sadness that we carry as adults because we understand what goodbye means. There may be moments of sadness when Riley doesn't understand why Emma doesn't come to our house any more but when she returns to visit she will be met with complete joy. There will be no hesitation or holding back because another goodbye will be in the future, simply joy that his friend is there to play.
While shuttling around from activity to activity this summer Emma and the boys enjoyed the Muppet's CD. Apparently both boys know most of the songs by heart but Riley made Rex laugh so hard he had to take a video with Emma's phone. I hope you get as big of a laugh from this little video as we did.
October is close that brings 31 for 21. I'll be attempting to blog everyday for the month of October in honor of Riley and Down syndrome awareness month. He has been giving me good content from his escapades at Kindergarten so come back for a good laugh and to help cheer me on.