Midge, who has graduated out of the nursery class at church, is very excited to be in her new “big-girl” class. She likes her teacher o.k., but she really loves the woman who is acting as teacher’s helper right now. Of course, Midge doesn’t differentiate. She just thinks she has two teachers.
As I said, she really loves The Z~ Teacher. As is the custom in our church, most children would refer to her as Sister Z~ (I know, probably seems odd since we’re not Catholic and nobody is a nun), but Midge just calls her The Z~ Teacher, or, if she’s talking really fast, The Z~.
When I met up with all of the kids after church this Sunday and we were getting coated up and ready to face the arctic air, Midge was going a mile a minute. Amazing, actually, since A~ usually corners the market there.
“My have a secret mom,” Midge tells me. Then, when I bend down to hear, she whispers this elaborate plan in my ear which involves me, her and The Z~ hiding so that McHusband, L~, A~, and Tank Boy can try to find us. After this game of hide and seek we will have ice cream and other snacks. I ask a few strategic questions and find out that she plans to do this all that afternoon at our house. I also discern that The Z~ has not been informed of this plan.
So I have to tell Midge that we will have to see if we can plan it for a different day. She is, amazingly, o.k. with that, and continues to regale me with her account of the time she spent that day with The Z~.
“The Z~ Teacher let me sit on her lap for a while . . .” and then, “The Z~ Teacher gave me some of her candy . . .”
“The Z~ Teacher said this . . .” and “The Z~ Teacher did that . . .” and “The Z~ played this game with us . . .”
“What was your lesson about?” I inquire.
“Prayer,” Midge says.
“What about prayer?” I ask.
“I don’t know, but The Z~ . . . ”
“It sounds like you really like Sister Z~,” I say.
“I do!” she replies.
“Hmmm . . .” I muse, “I bet you wish Sister Z~ were your mommy or something . . .”
Midge gets a shocked look on her face. “NO!” she says. “I have a mommy! I don’t want any other mommy!”
Well, that, of course, makes me feel pretty good. I don’t know sister Z~ super well, but I know her well enough to know that she is a great with kids, getting down on their level and really relating to them. She is fun. Me, probably not as much.
I am puttering around the kitchen at this point, pulling together some kind of lunch before nap time, feeling good that Midge wouldn’t trade me in, even for The Z~. I must not be such a bad mom, after all. Yay me!
Then Midge slides off the computer chair in the family room and comes into the kitchen to reassure me, and herself, that I will always be her mommy.
“My don’t want any other mommy,” she says with a kind of sad or worried look on her face, “because if we got a new mommy, well . . . then . . . well, then we would have to make a map for her so she could find all of the stores that our family shops at. My don’t want to make a map.”
I shop, therefore I am. And without a map, so I guess that gives me bonus points?
And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt says hello.