Sunday, May 20, 2007

kindergarten graduations...

This weekend we went to my niece's kindergarten graduation. Little did I know that I should have brought a box of Kleenex with me(oy!). They put on an end of the year concert and, well, let me just say that my auntie-heart was nearly BURSTING with love. Both my niece and nephew started Montessori school at the age of 2--and, while not many people celebrate the completion of kindergarten, I'm tellin' ya: a good (worthwhile and meaningful) education is worth celebrating. But hey, they celebrate half birthdays too--what can I say?!

I spent the entire first half of the program in tears. I am so proud of my niece, Ara, for who she has already become in her short 6 years of existence on this earth. I don't know what happened...but she walked out onto the stage with all of those other kids and I was just absolutely overtaken by such a huge bout of love that I didn't know what to do with it! My sister was sitting in the seat in front of me; I tapped her on the shoulder and, with big tears blurring my eyes, whispered: "Oh my god! I love her so much and she's not even mine!"

One of the biggest reasons that we moved to this city was to be closer to my niece and nephew while they are still young--and, every day, I am thankful for that decision. Sometimes V. tells me with a funny smile that I am totally over-emotional. I prefer to think that I love deeply. Sometimes that love scares me. I mean, my god, it reaches into my very core! How does that happen? When does love like that begin? Filaments of emotion strung so deeply that there could never be an end. This kind of love--it is such a strange and mysterious thing.

My niece, Ara.

And some more photos from the evening:

Preethy--the Montessori's founder and school principle--
such a beautiful woman, both inside and out.

Madame Montessori,
You have very truly remarked that if we are to reach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with children and if they will grow up in their natural innocence, we won't have to struggle, we won't have to pass fruitless idle resolutions, but we shall go from love to love and peace to peace, until at last all the corners of the world are covered with that peace and love for which, consciously or unconsciously, the whole world is hungering. ~Mahatma Gandhi, 1943

You should have seen the boy in the black bibs sing!
Oh, I've never smiled so hard in my life!

world peace please.
If there is to be peace in the world, there must be peace in the nations. If there is to be peace in the nations, there must be peace in the cities. If there is to be peace in the cities, there must be peace between neighbors. If there is to be peace between neighbors, there must be peace in the home. If there is to be peace in the home, there must be peace in the heart. ~Lao Tzu (570-490 B.C.)

The power of song.

Ara reciting a quote by John Lennon (flawlessly!). :)
All we are saying is give peace a chance. Imagine all of the people living life in peace. You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one. ~John Lennon.

There is something to be said for the innocence of childhood. To love so purely, to sing and dance and laugh with such abandonment--perhaps it is the young ones who are the true teachers of the world.

They were all so beautiful--each and every one of them.

I love you, Ara.


Anonymous said...

Beautifully recounted. I had tears in my eyes. Thank you for sharing.

Laura B. said...

Oh, Jessie - Thank you! What amazing pictures. I have never been to a kindergarten graduation, except my own. Time to find a random one, I think!

deirdre said...

You've put Auntie-love to such perfect words. I have two nieces, nine nephews, and one on the way. I cry all the time with love for these children.

Over-emotional? I don't think're just an auntie all surprised and filled with love.

Anonymous said...

Oy! She's not even MY niece and I'm tearing up!
Ara is adorable and I'm quite impressed that she quoted John Lennon! Yay for her!
You've done a beautiful job with this post! I love all the pics!
Enjoy every minute you can with your niece and nephew...they grow up so fast!!
You have so much love in your heart!! Just wait till you have your own!

Spiky Zora Jones said... is just so powerful. I think when you die, you take it with you.

Kids are so wonderful. They say and do the darnest things and they ask questions, lots and lots of questions. I love it all.

You know what brings tears to my eyes? When they run to you and they spread their arms wide for that big big hug. My eyes water up. I'm asked...why are you crying, auntie? Because I love you sweetie and I missed you.

Yep...I agree, that was a fabulous move Jessie.


megg said...

Oh I am jealous of the time you get to spend with your niece - I am aching to be nearer to mine! Thank you for showing such sweet messages & such an amazing girl!!

Melba said...

Wow what a school!
What an auntie you are for feeling so deep, what a human being!
I went on a long wagon walk with my children today and I was very present and feeling you and how you walk talk about your walks.


Tammy said...

Great shots, I can see why you cried. I keep popping in to check out your pup...I'm in love *sigh*

Anonymous said...

Thank you Jessie for a story about my concert. Say Hi to Lewie!


Jessie said...

WOW!!! Did I just get a comment from the superstar herself?! I'm glad you read this, Ara. I meant every word of it! {{{Big hug!}}}


bella said...

You describe your love for your niece so beautifully.. I'm happy that you get to experience this kind of love. It is amazing

Anonymous said...

Oh, sweetie...this post brought happy tears to my eyes. I know JUST what you mean about auntie-love...I adore my little nieces and nephews (who are *gasp* not so little anymore).

And I love kindergarten graduations! xoxo, M

Kristine said...

This is very sweet and cute!

swampgrrl said...

i got goose bumps reading this! i've been at all of my nieces & nephews graduations, and i've been through all those kleenex boxes too.

ain't being an aunt grand!!!

Ara's Oma said...

Thank you for putting me in the audience at this special young lady's graduation. I really wanted to be there and you made me feel a part of it.

bee said...

how cute are you, how cute is she, how cute is the boy in the black bibs, and the boy with the perfect 'o' mouth, and how beautiful is the principal, and how perfect are those quotes....

i'm knackered by how awesome this post is. i love you.

Jessie said...

Hi Ara's Oma! :) I wish you could have been there too. We would have needed a SECOND box of kleenex because I'm pretty sure you would have been crying right along with me!

MAHIMA said...

these photos are adorable (and evocative). i can totally understand the need for kleenex!!
and i love your words.
you write beautifully.

Elizabeth said...

I've really missd checking in on you and your world via the blog... and what a treat to come back too! A whole bunch of beautiful souls shining out from the computer screen. Thank you.

What a fab idea - kindergarden graduation... it would make me cry too :-)
Love to you. Catch up soon, E

Loralee Choate said...

Oh, those PHOTOS!!!!!!

She's adorable. I felt the same way about my niece's and nephews. They're as close to my own kids as you can get.

Kindergarten is a magical age. I'm glad you're around for it!


kj said...

hang on to that deep love, jessie. it weighs alot, but it's the best kind.