The Kiddo is in grade four.
Surely, he can’t be that big.
Big enough that one day he’ll remember the memories he’s making at this very moment.
No, he can’t be growing up that fast.
I remember, quite vividly, Grade Four. We lived in the red brick house, in Ontario. The one where we had green carpets, a big back deck, and I had a closet big enough to hide in when I wanted to.
I rode the school bus every day. I was in the class for those who could spell beyond a junior high level. I would read novels in the space of three hours. I had a group of friends that I loved, and one girl, named Kate, who was my arch nemesis.
Grade four was the year I realized I would be a writer one day. Grade four was when I had my first real crush on a boy named Travis. Grade four was when I realized that I was not at all handy with a hammer, and made a horrid version of a birdhouse.
I hated my teacher, and because of my parent’s fights, abuse, and other stresses, I stopped trying in class. I continuously left my homework in my desk, I asked to go to the bathroom as much as I could. I wanted to be social, not intelligent. I was bored, and I hated math.
I was the second tallest girl in my class, though that didn’t last for long. I remember boarding up the windows when the solar eclipse happened, and learning about it, but curiously wanting to look at it. I didn’t, because my fear of going blind was stronger.
I would have my first kiss in the summer of grade four, from a guy who would dedicate the song Everything I Do, I Do It For You. In the years following, he would propose to me at 14, become my best friend, and then we’d lose touch before he died in his 20′s from a childhood heart condition.
This was my last year in the elementary that I had gone to since kindergarten. My mother was accepted to a university out west, and we’d move in the summer. She’d find out that she was pregnant with The Brother one night, and hide it for weeks, even though I heard her and my dad crying over the stress it would bring.
So many memories.
Hard ones, good ones.
The Kiddo is in another year of school. Another year without knowing me. Another year that he will remember. Another year where I will struggle with the quickening of time, and another year, where I love him, remember him from a distance. Another year in my own memory where I am invisible in his memory, just an idea, a feeling, a person who exists but not really.
I hope it’s good to you, Kiddo.