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Mother's Day gift to mom of four boys: a little girl with Willy Wonka ‘lift’

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(Read caption) Monkey see, monkey do, until one of the monkeys rises up and rules the Planet of the Ape Kids. Quin and Laurel, the battle of the mornings continues.
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This Mother’s Day my gift came early in the form of a reality check on my relaxed and fun quotients. I learned to enjoy the present, thanks to a little girl named Laurel, 7, who entered our lives for school day mornings a few months ago and helped me get my mom skills to sparkle and shine again.

Laurel is in the chess program I run at the local community center and is always there and smiling no matter what. Win, lose, draw, cookie falls on the floor, she giggles through it all.

After being uncharacteristically absent for two weeks, Laurel came in one afternoon very somber and asked, “Mrs. Suhay, are you going to die today?” When I made light of it telling her I didn’t have that on my social calendar, Laurel solemnly replied, “My Daddy died. Am I going to die today?”

That exchange led to the chat with her mom, Theresa, and learning that Laurel’s step-father died very suddenly of a stroke, at age 34.  


The shock of the loss had the effect of shattering Laurel’s rose-colored view of the world.

Then I learned that Laurel’s mom was up at 5 each morning in order to drive her 18-month-old son to daycare across town and then get back to our neck of the woods to get Laurel to a breakfast program at school and then, finally, to work, again, across town.


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