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Bittersweet farewell

Goodbye is bittersweet especially when it means a child who grew up in a KinderCare center is walking out of the door and into the world, ready to start the next chapter of their life.

One family in Washington, Penn., sent Center Director NcKisha Cochran and her staff a note of thanks as they prepared to say goodbye to their center after 10 years. Excerpts from that heartfelt thank you remind NcKisha’s staff, and all KinderCare employees, exactly why teaching is such a rewarding career: it provides the opportunity to help a child explore their world and to share each child’s discoveries with their family.

In 2005, I entered through the doors at KinderCare with so many fears. I was leaving my 14-month-old daughter, my entire world, in the hands of complete strangers. Those complete strangers quickly became friends and family.

Five years later, insert baby #2 and the rest of my world was complete. Again I walked into KinderCare, this time [with] not a doubt in the world that she was in the best hands she could be in if it weren’t my own. Amazing what a few years does.

My girls have grown up at KinderCare. While there were ups and downs, I would not have changed my decision for the world. You all have shown them love and support while I could not be there because of work.

To the original gang: I cannot believe that it has been 10 years. I have never been more thankful for a group of women in my entire life as I am for you all. You are the keystone of this business. Your hears of gold have kept us coming back for more. For all of the new moms in fear I wish I could assure them that as long as you are there everything will be just fine.

Ms. Richelle [assistant director]: I don’t even know where to begin. In you I have gained a friendship that I hope will remain once we walk out of these doors today. I cannot thank you enough for always being there for me: always listening, laughing, and crying with me at all the right times. The couch in the lobby has my name all over it and you should really consider adding M.D. to your name.

Thank you a million times over for teaching Hailey to love school as much as she does. You set the path for her in kindergarten and she is soaring through now.

To all of the other wonderful teachers: You do not go unnoticed. Thank you for all that you do every day. Continue to love and have patience. These young minds all look up to you.

Thank you KinderCare for not only allowing me to gain friendships from within, but [for introducing me to] some of my greatest friends: other Moms at KinderCare.

What a ride it has been…With great emotion, I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for the smiles, the love, and the memories.

We love you always,

The Thomas family