After I told my first graders I would be gone for a while, I walked out to my car to begin the long drive up north to my parents' house. Clara somehow, in between shuttling her children to school and daycare and attending to her own busy life, managed to shove this note underneath my windshield wiper blade. For the next nine hours, as I tried to make sense of what my life had become, who I had become, I would take quick glances at it, reminding me that even though I felt like my world was ending right there, in that car, that I had friends who would help me rebuild.
"Of course, all of their words for a thousand years could not fill the hole left by his mother, but they could raise a loving fence around it so he didn't keep falling in." (Spinelli, Eggs)
And that is what Clara and so many others have done for four long years now: stopped me from falling in.