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Betsy the Brave

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Diane Carey

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Tomorrow is the day that Betsy starts kindergarten. Betsy was usually very brave, she wasn’t afraid of the potty, or broccoli. She wasn’t scared of spiders or the dark. She never cried when she scraped her knee or even when she got a shot in the arm at Dr. McDooleys office. But Betsy was very nervous about kindergarten. Her mother said she just had butterflies in her belly , but Betsy didn’t eat any butterflies. Her big sister Lucy told her she just had cold feet, but her feet didn’t feel cold at all. Her Aunt Matilda said it was a case of the jitters, what does that even mean? Betsy knew she was just plain and simply worried. What if no one liked her? She had lots of friends at preschool. What if she wasn’t smart enough? She knew her ABC’s but she sometimes got c mixed up with K and sometimes she forgets that xylophone begins with X instead of Z. Everyone is going to laugh at me ,she thought. What if my brand new sparkly shoes came untied? she tied them once before but they came loose right away. Sometimes I forget to sneeze in my elbow, sometimes I spill my milk at snack time. When I count to 20 I always forget the number 15. All these thoughts ran through her head, and now tears ran down her face. She wasn’t just a little worried ,she was down right scared. I’ve got to do something, I can’t go to kindergarten tomorrow ,I just can’t. Betsy had an idea, She try to convince her mom that her belly hurt and she needed to stay home from school. Its just butterflies her mom insisted again, I think mom has gone absolutely ,positively crazy. Betsy hid her new sparkly shoes, if I don’t have shoes, I can’t go to school ,she said to herself . Lucy found them for her, thanks a lot Lucy. Betsy had to come up with a plan, just then Aunt Matilda sat down next to her. “Betsy, she said, you are so brave. You eat your broccoli , you always catch spiders and set them free outside, and you never cry when you get a shot on your arm. I’m so proud of you. I got you a very special present for your first day of kindergarten.”I hope it’s not the jitters, Betsy thought to herself as she tore open the box. “Um ,Thank you but I think you forgot my present”,she said trying to be polite as possible . “No you see “,Aunt Matilda said ,”it’s an invisible cape. You are Betsy the brave . Your mother gave this to me on my first day of kindergarten when I was your age. I was really nervous.” You were? “,Betsy asked. “Oh yes, I couldn’t even tie my own shoes”, she said , “I was so worried because I thought cookie started with a K and sometimes I wiped my nose on my sleeve. I thought no one would like me. But when I wore this invisible cape I became so brave no one had any idea that I had the jitters.”They didn’t? “, Betsy asked ,still not knowing what on earth the jitters even were. “Nope “,she continued, “Here try it on.” She was right, Betsy did feel better. “I’m Betsy the brave and I’m a big kindergarten kid “,she proudly announced. The next day Betsy’s feet felt a little chilly even with her new sparkly shoes on ,and her belly fluttered just a bit, but she felt quite brave , pretty proud, and even a bit excited. Kindergarten was kind of like broccoli, It was different looking, and a little smelly too. At first she was afraid to even try it, but once she did , it was turned out to be pretty amazing.

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