Come along for the ride!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Onward and upward

Our usual procedure when arriving at school/work boiled down to my offering Joseph and Annabel a choice. They could either;

a) come upstairs to where I work, sit down and read a book or draw a picture


b) sit in the office and wait for the bell to go before I would come down and accompany them to their classrooms.

For the first month of my employment at the school it was always the first choice. Then they realised that climbing 8 flights of stairs to sit and doodle for a quarter of an hour wasn't all that it was cracked up to be and switched to the second choice.

Then Annabel wanted to come with me and draw again and, out of the blue, Joseph decided he would like to stay in the playground and play football with a couple of friends who also get to school early.

Today it was raining when we arrived and none of his friends were in the playground and so he begrudglingly decides to come upstairs with me, keep an eye on the weather and maybe he'll come down a bit later should he see any of his pals from a distance. After only two or three minutes however, he informs me he would like to go and play football with the Year 6 boys.

"Are you sure?" I asked him, knowing that the last thing the 11 year olds want is a 6 year old asking to play alongside them.

"Yes, I know such-and-such in Year 6. He lets me play with them".

Not entirely convinced, I told him to go and play and then walked along the landing to look down on the playground from our "far as the eye can see" vantage point.

I know, I know, it doesn't take much for my heart to be squeezed as far as my children are concerned but as I saw him skipping out to where the "big kids" were playing, he looked impossibly small.

I watched protectively (can you watch something protectively??) to see what would happen. He ran up to one of the Year 6 boys, obviously asking if he could join in. The big lad put both hands on Joseph's head (my heart thumping by now), ruffled his hair with both hands and then pointed his arm in the direction of a goal, clearly having told him the direction he would be kicking in.

Joseph's little skip was clear to see. What was harder to make out (but definitely there), was the smile on his face.

"Playing football with the Big Guys".

D'you remember how cool that felt?

Me too.


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