watching the leaves fall


See that tiny figure in this picture?  That would be my Eddie.

Last night after dinner, he wanted to go outside, and after about 20 minutes of not seeing him running anywhere in the back yard or driveway, I went in search of him.

I found him in our side lot with his little folding chair right on the edge of where our lawn meets the weeds before turning into the line of trees.

He had set himself up as if he was just sitting back watching something…and he had been sitting that way for awhile.

“Hey bud. Whatcha doin’?”

“Hi mom! I’m watchin’ the yeeves (leaves) fall.”

It was quite warm and humid yesterday and he had a layer of sweat on his little forehead.

“You’re just watchin’ leaves fall?”

“Yup,” and then he went into a string of questions that must have come to mind in the time he had been sitting there:

“Why is that sign on that tree?”
“What does it say?”
“Why are those leaves red and those orange and those green?”
“Why do some fall?”
“Where is the sun going?”
“Do the deers live in there?”
“Where do they go?”

I was going to tell him to come inside.  I was going to change laundry around.  But I stopped and got eye-level with him.

“I love you, Eddie.  You are so very smart and I am so very proud to be your mom.  I will miss you so much tomorrow.”

“I am proud of YOU, mom.  And I’ll miss you too.”

Later that night at bedtime he asked me to “yay by me a yittle bit and talk.” (Lay by me a little bit and talk).

And so I did.  We talked about leaves and deer and school and pillows.

When I left I squeezed him tight and told him how much I love him.

This morning I found him crying on the steps.

“What’s the matter, bud?”

“You’re getting ready to leave!”

“Yup, but I promise to pick you up from Renae’s and take you home for a snack.”

“And juice?”

“Yup. And juice.”

“Have a GREAT day, mom!  I love you!”

Then I left most of my heart behind in the bodies of two little boys.

And went to work.

About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.


  1. Awww. Eddie is the sweetest. How was your first day? You okay?

  2. I love the quiet mommy and me times!

  3. That kid just kills me! I left most odd my heart in 4 boys this morning – I feel you. Thanks for your beautiful writing.

  4. What a beautiful moment! Thanks for sharing it.

  5. Oh these boys. Too smart and sweet for their own good.

    And also?

    “i carry your heart, i carry it in my heart” comes to mind.

  6. He is so sweet 🙂 I hope the transition over the next week or so goes well for all of you.

  7. What a beautiful moment! I hope today and the rest of your week goes well as you transition back. Hugs

  8. What a sweet (and smart) little man.

    This year is our son’s first year of school. He’s been super excited all summer, but yesterday morning, while tying his shoes, he looked at me with round eyes and said, “Mama, I’m so scared. I will miss you so much.”

    It was all I could do not to cry. Later, when he was gone, I did.

    Our little men sure know how to tug at the heart strings, don’t they?

  9. It’s amazing when they’re so little and so introspective, huh? I hope you had a wonderful day and are having a better today. Hell, let’s call it for the whole year. It’s all gonna be good.

  10. I have watched my heart aka 4 kids get on the bus and be taken away for the past 2 days… it has to happen but I don’t really like it.

  11. This shiz kills me when we have to leave them girl.

    The worst now is whenever I pick Pea up from school and she’s all “I was worried about you today Mom cause I don’t want you to go to work, I want you to stay home.”

    How do you explain to your 3 year old that you can afford to buy her a Kindle Fire and spend $19 a person to get into the aquarium and take her on Christmas trips to Florida and she gets to watch Nick Jr. BECAUSE you go to work everyday? How do you explain that you can’t afford to NOT go to work? (I mean, I just can’t?)

    **Sigh** I love our kids.

  12. Eddie is a sweetie.

    Hope your first week went spectacular. xoxo


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