*FIVE YEARS LATER*
I put a slice of ham, cheese and lettuce on two sandwiches. I had two lunch boxes on the counter, one for Emmalee and one for Emmett.
It’s been five years since Trevor’s accident and after that I decided to quit my job and spend time with my children. It was financially challenging at times but it was so worth it. I saw them grow from babies into toddlers and from toddlers into children that are now going to school.
Emmalee is starting first grade and she is very excited, she made lots of friends in kindergarten last year and most of them will now attend elementary school with her. It is all she can talk about lately.
I made cute signs for them to hold as I wanted to have a memory from this day.
“Hold it up, Em,” I said and snapped a photo of her in her room. Of course she didn’t forget to add a smile.
Emmett on the other hand was scared to start kindergarten.
“I don’t wanna go, mommy,” he looked down and nearly cried.
“It’s going to be alright, bud,” I went down on one knee and tried to comfort him, “you will make a lots of new friends like you sister did.”
“I don’t want new friends, I have you and dad and Em and Roxy.”
“I know. But we are your family, you will meet girls and boys that are your age and like to play with the same toys like you. You will learn new things, you like learning new things, don’t you?”
He nodded, “mhmm.”
“See? You will like it, I promise.”
“But what if I don’t?”
“You will,” I gently pinched his cheek and stood up, “grab your backpack baby, we need to go.”
I helped him put on his shoes and turned towards Emmalee’s room, “Em, let’s go.”
Emmett refused to take a picture with the sight when I asked him earlier in his room, but I tried again outside and he finally agreed.
“Cheese,” I tried.
He wouldn’t hold the sign but when I put in on the stairs he would sit next to it. The sadness and fear from the unknown in his eyes was heart breaking but one day, I’m sure, we will all laugh at this photo. Roxy, who followed us outside, obviously didn’t want him to go to school either and she is definitely showing it with her facial expression.
Fifteen minutes later, we made it to the school. I liked that the kindergarten was part of the elementary school which makes it easy for drop offs and pick ups and hopefully it will make Emmett feel better knowing that his sister is in the same building.
There were children and parents everywhere. The playground behind the school was opened a when Emmalee spotted a group of her friends, she ran to them without turning back.
“Have fun, I will pick you up after school,” I yelled.
One of her friends was Caroline, Nora’s daughter, who was starting second grade today. They were very close since they basically grew up together. After I stopped working, I often helped Nora when she had no one else to look after their daughter.
I started walking towards the school entrance to walk Emmett to his classroom and meet his new teacher. He grabbed my hand in fear when he realized there is no escape now.
“I wanna go home.”
“You can’t, buddy,” I shook my head and smiled at him with empathy, “look there is miss Hardy, she will be your teacher. Let’s go say hello.”
He followed me quietly.
“Miss Hardy,” I stopped the young woman, “hi. My name is Dakota Cooper, we met at the orientation last week. This is my son, Emmett. He’s a little nervous.”
She immediately started talking to him about all the cool stuff they will be doing in class and I could tell his fear started to melt away and he was more curious than anything.
“You can say bye to your mom now and maybe you can come with and meet the class pet, Pete,” she was talking to him, but looking at me with a reassuring smile. I knew he will be in good hands.
“Bye mommy,” my son waved, still unsure, but definitely calmer.
“Bye sweetie,” I waved back, “I love you.”
I had to walk away because the last thing he needed was to see me cry.
Before I went back home, I decided to pick up some groceries in the nearby supermarket.
I was walking through the isles, deep in thoughts. How did it happen that they are both at school. It feels like yesterday they were just two babies.
The familiar voice brought me back to reality.
“Patricia!” I said in a very high voice and louder than I should. I haven’t seen her in at least three years. I couldn’t help but give her a long hug, “how are you? You look amazing, not a day older.”
“Liar,” she laughed but I could tell it made her day a little bit better.
“It’s true,” I insisted.
“Well thank you, darling. You look great, too. It looks like motherhood is treating you well. Where are the kiddos? I haven’t seen them since they were toddlers.”
“I just dropped them off at school. Emmalee just started first greade and Emmett kindergarten.”
“You’re kidding,” Patricia tilted her head and her mouth slightly opened in disbelieve, “has it really been that long?”
“Looks like it,” I nodded, “sometimes I can’t believe it either.”
“Oh I know, it’s crazy how time flies when you have kids in your life. You have to enjoy it while you can, my dear.”
“I did. I’m glad I stopped working when they were little. I just don’t know what I’m gonna do with myself now, when they are at school most of the day.”
“My offer still stands if you want. Even if you just wanted to do part time, I would be happy to have you.”
“Thank you. I will definitely think about it. How is business by the way? I’m sure it was crazy busy during summer.”
“It was busy, but I love it,” she confirmed with a smile. She loved her job very much and it showed. Every time she talked about her wedding boutique she had this smile on her face. She opened it thirty years ago and it was still standing strong. Even though brides these days have so many options, they still choose to go to her. “How is Trevor? And your parents?”
“Trevor is doing good, his repair shop is doing great, too. My dad was a huge help, but now Trev is doing pretty much everything himself. My parents had to go to Sierra for a few months to help my aunt Carissa. She became very sick and unfortunately died last month.”
“Oh, I’m so sorry. I remember her from the wedding, she was such a sweetheart.”
“She was,” I looked down. We got the sad news last month but it was no surprise to us. Her health was quickly declining. My dad, her brother, was with her until her last day and since she had no other family, no husband or children, he had to take care of everything regarding her funeral and inheritance, “we will miss her a lot. Emmalee loved her. They used to sing together by the piano at my parents’ house whenever Carissa was visiting an she even taught her how to play. Well, she tried anyway. Turns out Em doesn’t have the best musical ear.”
I laughed at the memories and Patricia joined me.
“I’m sure Emmalee has different talents. I would love to see the kids sometime.”
“Of course, you should come over one day while it’s still nice out.”
“I would love that, darling,” she smiled kindly. I think she is feeling a little lonely. Her daughter lives on the other side of the country and never visits her.
“Maybe this Sunday? We can have a cookout. I can invite Nora too. I know she would love to see you.”
“That sounds like a great idea. I am looking forward to that. I will let you finish shopping and see you on Sunday.”
“See you on Sunday. Take care, Patricia.”
Miss Hardy lead me into the classroom and let me pick a seat. I chose one all the way on the back of the room. There were tables with four chairs around it. Soon more kids were coming in and picking seats.
Two boys with black hair sat across from me but the chair next to me was still empty. The boys were talking together but didn’t notice me at all. It looked like they already knew each other.
Miss Hardy then stepped in with a red hair girl standing shyly behind her. Just like I was.
“Is it ok if Melissa sits next to you, Emmett?”
I just nodded and the girl put her backpack down and took a seat.
“Hello,” she said quietly.
Good thing I’m not the only scared kid here.
“Hi, I’m Emmett.”
She said her name even though I already knew her name was Melissa from miss Hardy. And then we started talking about toys and pets. she said her family has a dog, too. His name is Lenny and he’s a small dog that barks a lot. Maybe kindergarten won’t be as bad as I thought…
A/N: As always check out my simstagram for more pictures 🙂