Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Last Day of School

Yesterday, Annie's teacher, Miss Cindy, invited us to the dedication of a little flower garden they planted in front of the school in her memory. In the middle of the garden is a weeping cherry tree--very  appropriate, because I think I watered it enough for this week just with my tears. They also made a memory book of pictures and a CD of video and still pictures from this past year. Many of her classmates were there with their parents: Maya, Josh, Elise, Aiden, Caitlyn, Kai...and her friend, Molly, who bears a striking resemblance to Annie, and who, we used to say was Annie's older sister. Sweet, sweet children.

Her teachers and therapists: Cindy, from this year, Amanda from the last two years, Cynthia, Brenda, Karen, Meg, Barb, and Annie's nurse, Miss Patty were all there, as well as principal Brenda, counselor Merriah, teacher Chandler, paraeducators Roxanne, Alicia, Dina...friends Amber and Rebecca...many wonderful, kind people. My kids, David, Jack and Olivia came too, with friends Jessica and Chioma.

Bill and I knew it was going to be difficult returning for the first time to Annie's school...I think the last time I was there with her was for the Valentine's Day party, pictured in the memory book. School, and the people there were such a big part of our lives. Annie loved being at school with all her friends, although she didn't like everything they made her do--like taste pudding and finger paint. But she loved walking through the halls on her Kidwalk, visiting with the ladies in the office, and sitting next to little Elise at circle time, who would pull a "Hi" out of Annie every day. We miss seeing everyone there so much...just like we miss Annie.

The garden, memorial plaque, book and CD were all such kind gestures...we are grateful for the friends we made through her school, and the caring people who worked with her over the years. God blessed us and Annie through them all.


"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things." Robert Brault


Susan said...

What a beautiful tribute. It is clear you, your family and especially Annie blessed those at the school, as well. Much love, Susan

Marilyn said...

Ditto above. Thanks for sharing. and great quote at the end!

Anonymous said...

What wonderful friends you have. So glad Annie had so many people who loved her. Beautiful honor for a beautiful little girl.

Sue Powell

Anonymous said...

Annie was loved by many because Annie truly enriched the lives of all who knew her and our families and friends who shared our stories about the wonderful things she did daily. I personally shared the video of her barking with everyone I knew as I was so excited every time that beautiful girl learned something new. She will be remembered fondly forever in our hearts. Thank you to everyone who came together to honor her life and the gift that her life gave to all of us at the dedication.
Miss Cindy

Jean said...

Susan--It was so beautiful--their love for her has been a great comfort to us.
Marilyn--I want that quote written somewhere in my house--I love it too!
Sue--They DID love her--but who couldn't?? She was just so darn cute...when she wasn't yelling "No, No, No!"
Cindy--That pink party was so touching--the pink flowers, the pink cookies...and my kids (and I) love looking through her school photo book...thank you so much for putting that all together. It was a huge gift that we will never forget.

Gretchen said...

Sigh. I miss her.

And I love the quote, too.

The kindness of people is so uplifting, isn't it? It's like a kiss from heaven.

Jean said...

I miss her too, Gretchen. :( Being at the school was like ripping that bandaid off again.

...Is Jesus here yet??