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Last Kindergarten Kisses

Daddy calls the kids back as they leave with Papa for their last day of kindergarten.

D: Give me a kiss. This is the last time either of you will be able to give me a kiss as a kindergartener because tonight when I pick you up, you will be first graders.
F (after complying): Bye, Daddy.
D: Bye.

Cory runs over for a last kindergarten kiss (and hug), too.

D (climbing out of the car at pickup, opening the back door): Now, guys, let’s check it.
F: Check what, Daddy?
D: We definitely have to check it. (Leaning over for a kiss from him.) Yep.
C (faux exasperation): What!? I know you are just…
D (cutting her off with a kiss): Yep, yep.
F/C: What?!
D: I knew it. (Big sigh.) Definitely first graders. You guys are definitely first graders. I guess time kept moving forward today…like it always seems to do.

Daddy shakes his head. They smile. She has a moment, later, crying suddenly in the shower.

C: But, Daddy, my best friend in the whole world is leaving! (One of several “best friends in the whole world” is not moving; she’s just attending a charter school in the same district.) And, I don’t get to go to kindergarten ever again in my whole life!

Hair full of conditioner, eyes full of tears, face full of angst, naked as a jaybird, she stamps her foot in the water. Daddy tries to take it seriously. Fisher has his, quieter moment later.

F (hugging in the dark before Cory arrives for bedtime rituals): Daddy, I wish I could just stay in kindergarten for another year.
D: Why’s that?
F: Because in kindergarten, you get to make a pinch pot, and you get to have your own playground, and you get to…

He keeps ticking the “get-to’s” off. Two years have passed since their first day in kindergarten. Good, solid run.

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