Tuesday, August 16, 2011

We Don't Need No Education...

It seems impossible that yesterday we brought Bub home from the hospital and now "it" is here.  "It" is something I have thought about hundreds of times since he was born and yet it has somehow snuck up on me.  "It" has been the mile marker (in my mind at least) of when he is truly transitioning from a baby to a child.   But, the clothes are picked out.  The Mystery Machine lunchbox and homemade, coordinating tote bag are ready. He's got a slick new haircut and he's even been brushing his teeth twice a day (don't judge my parenting).  So, other that me emotionally, we are ready for "it" to happen.  He is officially going to start kindergarten. There has many tears and gnashing of teeth. 

Well the gnashing of teeth has primary been from this guy:

But, there has certainly been plenty of tears on my end.  Tears of happiness over the strong child he has become.   Tears of sadness realizing that "yesterday" that we brought him home has already been over 5 years ago.  Tears of hope on whom he is becoming.  Tears of gratitude that I get to see him every morning.   And tears of confusion and doubt on what this chapter will look.

I have been thinking a lot lately (well... lately actually meaning the past 5 years) about what I hope Bub's teacher is like.  And I think more than anything my hope for her is that she sees her job as not preparing Bub for 1st grade, but for life while doing everything she can to preserve and appreciate who he is today.

Because let's be honest.  He's the bomb.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


I have significantly neglected my blog the past couple months.   I apologize.  If it makes you feel any better I have also significantly neglected my diet.  And for what it is worth, I have missed the blog a heck of a lot more than the diet.  

Amen?  Amen!

Life has been...   I am trying to think of a smart analogy here, but I can't.  Life has simply been life.  

Being in the Early Childhood Education field suits me well for many reasons.  I get to see beautiful babies daily.  I get to see the wonder and amazement of when a young child learns a new skill.   I don't have to do higher order math.   It's great.   Another reason that it suits me so well is because it gets to feed my addiction to children's books.   There are so many simple, unpompous truths in children's literature. 

There are reasons that we give new graduates Dr. Seuss's Oh, The Places You'll Go.  Uncomplicated, yet important messages such as "You'll be on your way up! / You'll be seeing great sights! / You'll join the high fliers / who soar to high heights" it is a book in which the words can envelope them in a hug letting you know that adulthood is going to be alright.

Likewise, every expectant mother is bound to receive a copy of Rober Munsch I Love You Forever under the guise of "being for baby".   Yet, as she reads through tear-filled eyes to her expanded abdomen the sing-song reoccurring line of "I love you forever/ I like you for always/ As long as I'm living/ My baby you'll be" it becomes clear that the message is not for that tiny baby, but rather an anthem of the unconditional love already felt for the child.  

I could go on and on about beloved children books that are simple, yet profound.   Written in language that is understandable by children, but a message that can only be understood by an adult's mind.   I have many loves when it comes to children's literature, however, my most beloved children's book is entitled Someday  by Allison McGhee.

I cannot say enough good things about this book.  I can vividly remember standing in Barnes & Noble at the 74th week of  pregnancy with Goose (yes... I had the gestation of an elephant with her) looking for a book to "give" her when she was born (that's another story for another day... after growing a baby elephant you don't come to the delivery empty handed).   I was thumbing through the books when I stumbled upon Someday.  On the first page I was hooked by the beautiful illustration of a mother savoring her just born baby girl.   Then came the accompanying text, "One day I counted your fingers and kissed each one."  

I am fairly certain I cried from that first line until the last.   The book follows the life cycle of being a mother and celebrates all the things that she anticipates her daughter experiencing.  

Someday your eyes will be filled with a joy so deep that they shine.

Someday you will run so fast and so far your heart will feel like fire.

Someday you will swing high- so high, higher than you ever dared swing.

In approximately 20 pages the life of this little girls is laid out.   But, as I mentioned at the beginning of this blog, life is life.  And sometimes life isn't pretty.   And as the mother in Someday tells her daughter that Someday you will hear something so sad that you will fold up with sorrow.  

Sadly, last week I heard something that has me folded up with sorrow that has been at times unbearable.   My heart is broken and several of the people's whom I love the most hearts are broken.  And sadly, this part of "life" is of the most unfair variety and there is absolutely nothing that I can do to make it better.   And the truth of the matter is there is nothing that can every make this part of what is now our lives "better".  

However, I have come to realize in the past few days that though there is nothing that is going to take this sorrow away that (to paraphrase McGhee) "Someday, we will look back and realize that it is just small part of who we are and it is not what defines who we are to become."  

There will again be happiness.  Goodness will again become apparent.  This ugliness can never go away, but it does not mean that it has to turn us into ugly people.   And that "Someday your eyes will {again} be filled with a joy so deep that they shine."