In that room I was happy and laughter was abundant.
It was there where I learned the restorative power of naps on special mats.
I knew that a Care Bears lunchbox had the power to make everything all better.
In that room, I was dubbed a “chatterbox.” And a “delightful student.”
In that room, life was simple.
If I close my eyes, I am there again. Walking to the kindergarten wing. Two classrooms that shared a closet of cubbies just outside their doors. My name is written on a panda bear. Because panda rhymes with Miranda.
I can see the centers. Drawing tables to the left, kitchen and dress-up areas to the right. Blocks in the back of the room. Those were the coveted spots for naptime.
Round tables lining the middle of the room.
The bulletin board with our frogs on their lily pads ready to jump into the water if we misbehaved.
I can still smell the crayons.
Everything else is faded. Not quite black and white, but not in full color. Shaded with passing years.
But when I close my eyes tightly, I catch a flicker of the peace that filled my five-year-old heart and it sustains me for just a moment or two.
Until I open my eyes.
For this week’s memoir prompt we were asked to write about kindergarten. Or the earliest grade we could remember. While I’m not certain this is even sort of what was expected, it was the story behind my eyes.