To the teachers of highschool:

August 2011,

I don’t know how to tell you this, but I feel I should. Its something you will probably figure out within the first three minutes of meeting her. You got a talker in your class this year. Its not that she doesn’t try to be quiet, especially in class, I think its sometimes that she cant. She has so many thoughts and words and ideas in her mind that she just loves to talk. To anyone. And anything. You will discover this soon, I am sure.

She makes friends with anyone and everyone. Don’t be alarmed if she invited the entire school to her house on the first day. Or if she knows everyone by name. She is the social one of the family, and doesn’t take her job lightly. You will probably hear her story from start to finish within the first few days of meeting her. She will talk to you like you are her best friend, and like you are the only one hearing these things, and then she will turn to the random stranger and tell them the same things. She will love you both the same, because to her, you are the same – you are both her friends. Most likely her best friends.

She probably wont finish lunch because she is too busy talking, and she might be late to a class or two, because, well, you guessed it, she was talking. But if you send her to see the principal – she will, well, most likely talk her way out of it. Did you guess? She loves to talk.

Since this is her first year at this school, and the last school she will attend, I am asking you for a favor. Fail her so she will stay young forever. Make her repeat the grade two or three times, just so I will have her a while longer. You see, shes growing up way too fast for my liking. Just a few days ago she was eight years old, talking about all things girl related. Hair, nails, and clothes. And just yesterday I picked her up from the airport and wondered where the little girl had gone. So please, help me in this quest to keep her young forever.

I fear this will be the year she will discover boys. Even though in her words boys are “Gross.” She said that. I swear. Just a few short days ago. When she was 10. Just a few days ago, honest.

She wears her heart on her sleeve, its where it has lived for the past fourteen years. And its where it has grown, right along with her. She is kind and caring, yet she is all things fourteen. I am sorry, you have another teenaged girl in your class room, I can only hope you have aspirin in your desk, I will send some. You will need it.

I don’t know how it happened, and maybe you can teach her this in math class so she can teach me – but somehow the little girl I know, is telling me she is going to high school. Where she will graduate in a few years. I don’t think this is possible, and I would appreciate it if you could do something about that. Like I said failing her in certain things is totally ok with me, as long as she stays young. Forever. I cant imagine having an adult kid. That just isn’t right.

If you somehow manage to catch her for longer than three seconds and are able to get a word in edge wise, please tell her to be careful. She trusts easily. Loves openly and without cause. She is a friend to anyone, and will do mostly anything anyone asks of her. Unless I ask, of course.

There is a reason you have two ears and one mouth – you will need to listen twice as much. But please tell her a few things that I have tried to instill in her the past few years that have gone by all too quickly. Please tell her that I love her. To be careful. To look both ways when crossing the street. To listen sometimes, and not always do the talking. To keep on being herself, and not to let anyone get in her way. I know she wont have a problem with that, and you might need to lay off that just a little. It may have been the one thing shes heard.

Please take care of this little girl who is entering high school way before her time. Please love her back. Treat her with all the gentleness that I cannot muster, and learn that while she walks mostly to her own beat, she will always stop to help someone who needs help. Please help me, and keep an eye on her. Watch her for me. Shes much too young for high school, but here she comes – thinking she is more than ready.

In closing, maybe she is ready. Maybe its me that’s not ready. Not ready to let this openly sensitive caring kid out. Out into the rush of high school where I fear her dreams, and hopes will be crushed beneath the feet of an unruly boy. Please keep her safe, when Im not there to chase them away. And If I show up to school with a shot gun, please don’t put me in jail. Its just that this little girl has no business with boys. Or high school for that matter.

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