What is it about that very first school evaluation that's so incredibly special? I opened the envelope from Charlie's teacher on Thursday and studied those few pages for what seemed like hours, smiling at his straight "A" progress report.
It's in that moment when I soaked in just how far he's come. I couldn't help but well up, as I digested his progress in this past year.
And then my mind drifted to his teacher...his very special teacher who shared beautifully written comments about how much she's enjoyed watching him grow and become so independent in her class.
She was our daughter's teacher when Daniel died.
She was there at our fundraiser--celebrating with us--on our journey to bring Charlie home.
She was there when he was a face on a photo and just a dream in our hearts. And now, he graduates from her class, and he's taken a place in her heart.
Throughout the year, she celebrated his milestones with us. She chuckled in his feisty times when he exhibited emerging confidence and spice.
She tells me, repeatedly, what a sweet child he is, and how sometimes she just has to give him hugs. I see the look in her eyes when she speaks about Charlie...she loves him, too.
She tells me, on numerous occasions, how she had tears in her eyes listening to Charlie say the Pledge of Allegiance. She knows how far he came to say that Pledge. And it brought tears to her eyes. Charlie doesn't know what that Pledge even means yet. But he will. Someday, he will, and I hope he remembers who taught him those precious words.
Thank you, Kendra Bivins, for being you, and for loving our little monkey so much. Our family will always remember you. And Mr. Charlie, please keep those grades up, young man.