In February I wrote about a boy in my Pre-School class whose mother had passed away suddenly.
But he didn’t know. His heartbroken dad told him that she was sick in hospital.
For six months he didn’t know. I would ask about her and he would say she was still sick and not waking up.
I would often talk to him about her until one day he told me that he was angry at her for not waking up and told me not to talk about her anymore.
So I didn’t.
Then last Wednesday 10 minutes before class ended he started crying.
I asked him what was wrong and he looked at me with little tears running down his face and he said in a most quiet voice “my mums dead”.
And I hugged him. And I said “Yes. She died and it’s so sad”.
He cried and we hugged. And I told him that it’s okay to be sad. That it’s okay to miss her forever.
Then a lady from Childcare came and picked him up and told him to stop crying and that he’ll be fine.
And I wanted to slap her and tell her that I’d been waiting for this moment for 6 months and that it won’t be okay for him. He will never get him mum back. His memories of her will fade and his 2 year old sister will probably have no memories of her.
I spoke to his Dad the next day and told him what happened. He told me that they kept asking him when she was going to wake up so he finally told them that she wasn’t going to wake up because she has died.
He told me that they are too young to understand.
I don’t think he’s right.
Kids understand things in their own way.
Kids have these big hearts and love openly and honestly and it’s beautiful. They see things clearer than we do. They ask questions, a lot of questions. They want to understand everything.
So I think it’s my job for the last 4 months of the year to be the person that he can talk to about his mum. To provide a safe and honest place for discussions.
And to hug.