Here we are at the first day of school again and I am feeling that old familiar melancholy.
(I am loving the reflection of the American flag)
I was doing well this morning. We had our ducks all in a row and everything ran very smoothly. We even arrived at school early and had plenty of time for extra photos. The kids were thrilled with the extra photos part. I jest.
But they did oblige me with more than a fair share of pictures. I just had this urge to take as many pictures as I could. After all, this is the last first day of school with ALL of my kids at the same school. It was kind of a big deal.
One by one I followed the kids to their classrooms. I watched Joey and Tommy set their backpacks in their lockers and head into their classrooms. Moments later a nervous Tommy came out and asked me what I thought he should do. I told him that maybe he could organize his books into the order of his classes. Or maybe ask the teacher. Tommy marched up to his new middle school teacher and said, "Excuse me, what would you suggest I be doing right now?" I had to turn away quickly to stifle my giggle. It was adorable.
As Tommy and Joe organized their books I walked Ben and Grace downstairs to their classrooms. More pictures were taken and good-bye hugs and kisses were given. Though the kids seemed fine I had a hard time pulling myself away from their classrooms.
I hung around in the hallways at school far longer than I needed to. I kept peeking into classrooms. Checking in. Tommy caught my eye and came out to show me how he had arranged his notebook for optimum organization. The kid was nervous for his first day of middle school. So many changes. "It's a little overwhelming, actually." he told me in the hallway before heading back into the class room.
For me too, Tommy. Me too. It is all just overwhelming. Watching these little people grow by leaps and bounds every day. It is overwhelming how my love for them just continues to multiply. It is overwhelming trying to learn to let go little by little. Wanting to hold on tight but knowing this is what is right. What is meant to be. It is overwhelming watching them be brave and independent and strong and kind. It is all just overwhelming.
Dear God in heaven,
please be with my children as they start a new year.
Help them to work hard and do their best.
Keep them safe, happy, and healthy.
Give them a love for learning.
Help them to grow in confidence and independence.
Show them how to be compassionate.
Let them be a friend to all, kind, and loving.
Let their failures motivate them to try harder.
Let their successes humble them.
Help me, Lord, to be patient, understanding, loving, and wise
in guiding them through this school year.
Be with my children, Lord.
Let your light shine in them and through them
and keep them close to You.