By: Connor Lenahan
I had a nice visit back home with my family and friends for my short summer in Waverly. I was absurdly lazy during this period. It was a nice chance for me to recharge after a mentally and emotionally draining second semester at Boston University. This was my reasoning for staying in bed until 1PM almost daily. It was awesome.
One of the days I was home I was fortunate enough to spend with my friend Elyse Notarianni at the St. Gregory’s Early Childhood Center with the kindergartners she teaches. Elyse regularly raves about the kids and their teacher, Mrs. Arcangelo, as being the sweetest people alive. Needless to say, I had high hopes for the afternoon. Thankfully, my hopes were exceeded.
I’m not sure there’s a clear way for me to express how wonderful these kids were but ohmygodtheywerethemostadorablethings. Elyse had wondered whether or not I’d feel comfortable talking about living with the wheelchair with the kids. As I have zero reservations about talking about my chair and Osteogenesis Imperfecta, I immediately agreed. Elyse had also warned me that the kids might now pay attention.
They hung on every word. I told them about my not so secret identity as Iron Man. I was sharing stories about breaking legs and how I’ve lived with the condition while not corrupting any of their tiny minds. I was shocked at how smart they were. One kid in particular was asking me about how I drive and how I shower. These are questions that adults don’t even think to ask. I was impressed.
Mrs. Arcangelo had asked some wonderful questions herself and was an absolute sweetheart. Watching her interact with the kids was delightful. As someone who grew up around sweet teachers it was nice to see these kids were having a comparable experience.
After the kids watched some of Despicable Me 2 while I talked to Elyse I was invited to read a book to the kids. They selected The Dumb Bunnies, which ended up being funnier than I’d like to admit as an almost 20-year-old adult. This signaled the end of the day for the kids so we prepared them for the end of the day. Before we all headed out we grabbed the picture at the top of this article. When Elyse sent it to me last night I made an audible “awwwwwww” that could be heard in Rhode Island.
I loved my afternoon with the kindergarteners and Mrs. Arcangelo already. Then Elyse told me that Mrs. Arcangelo had a note for me. Seeing as I was in Boston I would be unable to physically grab it. Elyse sent it to me.
This made my month. This and the comment one of the kindergartners made to Elyse yesterday: “Could you bring your friend back in because I didn’t get to meet him and I heard he’s Iron Man.” I love everything. I need to go back. I love these kids. I love everything.
Connor Lenahan (@ConnorLenahan) is a sophomore at Boston University, majoring in journalism. He can be contacted at email@example.com