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No. It just can’t be.

The past few weeks have been filled with lots of talk about kindergarten, & shopping for supplies and clothes. I knew I wasn’t ready…but I don’t think any mom is truly ready to see her kid head off to kindergarten! I was driving to Saint Louis on Wednesday and out of no where, I started bawling. Not just tears…big sobs. I was saying “No. It just can’t be! He and Miles were just in the NICU!!!” (ok, tears are already starting again as I type this!) There is never a day when Miles isn’t missed around our house, but the big milestones are just so hard! There should be two little boys with matching outfits & backpacks heading off to Kindergarten. I feel like we have all missed out on so much. Mason was given a blue bear at Miles’ funeral and it has been his favorite buddy the past five years. Mason took it with him to school on the first day…and I just kept thinking…he shouldn’t have to have a bear…he should have his twin brother!!!!!!!!!!!! They should be racing each other to the doors & looking out for each other on the playground. It’s just not right. It just can’t be. While in Saint Louis, I was talking to my friend Jessica in the parking garage about it before I left and we were both in tears. This mommy’s heart was just so broken. I got home & told Tyler that I was going to crawl in bed and sleep with Mason tonight. I just needed to be close to him…and soak in his last night of babyhood. Mommy needed some Mason snuggles!

We woke up bright and early on Thursday & Mason rolled over and said “Mommy!!! What are you doing in my bed?!?” and then gave me a great big hug. I told him that I wanted to read him a book before we got up and started getting ready. I said “It’s called the Kissing Hand.” Mason immediately thought this was a dumb idea and said “no! NO!” (the idea of kissing is already grossing him out.) I told him he would just have to endure it. I read him the story about a little racoon leaving for school & how his mommy kissed his hand so he wouldn’t miss her. Then, I told Mason to hold out his hand so I could kiss it. He kept his fists clenched. No way was I getting to kiss his hand…he officially thought I was insane! I settled for a kiss on the cheek & then we got up & got him ready for his first day. He picked out his shirt that said “Dude!” on it. He is all about looking cool these days & insists on wearing his hair spikey if we leave the house! He has to look good for the ladies!

We were running behind schedule, but I still had to get some pictures in the front yard before we walked to school…




We then held hands and walked over to the school. I was holding it together well for him. I knew he couldn’t handle it if he saw me get teary eyed. He lined up with the other boys against the wall & looked so sweet. The bell rang & he waved at me & followed his teacher inside. I felt the tears coming. (the mom next to me was hysterically sobbing, so I figured a couple of tears weren’t too bad! I had sob fest 2010 the day before!) I looked at Millie and saw that she was teary. I said “Millie! What’s wrong!” She said “I don’t want Mason to be all alone!”

Um. could she be any sweeter?

I hugged her and said that he was going to be with teachers & his friends and wouldn’t be alone. We walked back home & it felt so weird to not have him with us. (I fully admit to having Tyler drive by the play ground at lunch so we could see if he was out there. I saw him by the monkey bars & he looked like he was having so much fun. I knew he was going to be ok.)

Millie & I walked over to pick him up & I saw him peering out the windows & gave me a great big wave. As soon as the bell rang, he came out the door & gave me a huge hug & told me just how much he loved getting to be at school. We got home & he didn’t leave my side for about 15 minutes & showed me everything he did that day…and I know now that he truly is going to be just fine & school is going to be such a great thing for him! Oh, and for the record…his teacher also read him the Kissing Hand! He had to endure the book twice that day! LOL!

We promised him that if he was good at school, we would take him somewhere fun to celebrate his first day. We ate dinner at Dairy Queen, went putt putting, and watched Star Wars when he got him. He had such a great day.

Me…I’m doing good. Tyler treated me to lunch, brought me flowers, cleaned the kitchen & rented a chick flick for me. I think he knew I needed some extra love that day! I’m so grateful for his love and support.

My sweet Miles…I so wish I could’ve shopped for school supplies with you & I wonder which back pack you would’ve picked out. Would you want Star Wars, or would Cars or Spiderman be more your thing? Would you have headed off to school so confident like your brother, or would you have been more intimidated? I wish so badly I knew the answers to these questions. I love you so much & cant wait for the day that I get to see you again!

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  • Jessica - A love story. Sweet pics, Mason is just too cool! 🙂 Love you so much!

  • Sarah Karasch - That is so sweet, you even made me tear up and I don’t have kids yet! Those pictures are precious!

  • Dawn Hutchins - Kellie, I can not believe how big Mason is – he looks so grown up with that little spiked up hair. All these milestones get worse, so be ready…high school, graduation, moving out, marriage- but, yes kindergarden is a biggie, I know. Ive shed those tears myself. Just wait till they come home broken hearted because some one has been ugly to them…oh boy !!
    I cryed when I read the blog story, It hurt so bad to lose my Mom and Dad, I can not imagine what you go through. No words..
    I will keep you in my prayers.
    Dawn

  • Sarah Aldridge - Well, I thought I was an emotional wreck this week, then I read this and lost it again! What an awesome mommy you are, Kellie! I know how much you miss Miles, but I have to say that you and Tyler do such a fantastic job at keeping his spirit alive. Mason has his brother with him everywhere he goes b/c you’ve given him that gift! Millie has a tender heart like her mama, so kudos to you!! The pictures are priceless and I think the Lord gave you this gift of photography so that you will never miss a moment with your precious kiddos! Love ya lots and appreciate you sharing this special moment with another mommy who is struggling with letting go!!
    XOXOXO

  • Samantha - I remember first reading about Miles last year and being so touched by your story. I read this and kept it together until the end. Your photography is so amazing and inspirational. Thank you for reminding me to hold my kids a little tighter and longer. 🙂

  • Nancy - What a great job of documenting such an emotional day, Kellie. Hugs Mama!!

  • Ryan Springer - Is it too crazy that I’ve already thought of my Jackson’s (2 years) first day of kindergarten, still years away? It goes way too fast. Enjoyed reading what you wrote, Kellie. Life seems so unfair sometimes and my heart hurt for you just reading that. It’s a daily decision we make, isn’t it? To take up our cross and follow Him… trusting even when we don’t understand.

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