Joey was homesick. Ms. Howitt knew what to do.
“Here, see these beads? What’s your mommy’s favorite color?”
“Let’s put a green bead on the string. Touch it when you feel sad. Your mommy will feel like you gave her a hug.”
Joey touched the bead. He smiled then joined his classmates.
During art time, the phone rang.
“Ms. Howitt? This is Joey’s mother. I’m at the doctor’s. Could you tell him I’ll be late?”
“I slipped on the stairs and broke my ankle. It’s bizarre — I was all alone, but suddenly I thought someone grabbed me.”
Author’s Note: I wanted to play with idea of an adult making up a story to comfort a child, as well as the superstitious idea that if you say something, it will become true.