Friday, December 10, 2010

Finding the Blessings

I was in a hibernate-y mood. Too much to do, too much to think about. Too many people needing something from me.

But it was time for what in the slang in my head I call "butt-day"; time to put in my hours at our little homeschool-school. Time to sit myself down and just be there as part of the cadre of parents who hang to keep the peace during lunch and PE.

Oh I didn't want to go. Yes it was supposed to be my day off from work but there had been paint trauma with the living room prior to the new carpet going on on my work day, so I was behind. And my kind of job never really allows for a personal leave day or anything--the work just sits in the corner and patiently waits for you. It's got those glow-y eyes, too.

So, I took myself up to school. After lecturing my youngest son about personal responsibility and discipline all morning, I felt guilty just thinking about blowing it off.

It was lovely up at school. There were babies riding in back packs, littles playing in the preschool room. Teens were clustered in little groups--some playing guitar, some studying. Some just hanging out.

There was a soup lunch that one of the kids had arranged, she's trying to raise enough money for a "Cheese of the World" package for Heifer. We had a bake sale for the Musical Theater class and a candy sale for the drama class. Lots of people were working and laughing and playing and getting ready.

I realized that my "butt-time" is coming to an end. This is our youngest son's last year at the little homeschool-school. Yes, the middle son may go through this school for his early college program next year, but it's not the same. That's just stopping in for paperwork and saying "hi". If you're a parent of a "Running Start" student, you don't have to do volunteer hours in the same way. After all, your kid isn't one exploding beans in the microwave, or getting a little too loud with the guitar in the hallway. So for me, these days are coming to an end.

Zap. The whole day shifted. I was deeply grateful for the mess of soup bowls to wash. And deeply grateful for babies toddling out from the preschool room to snitch a cookie from the bake sale. Even the trauma of another little injury during PE made me smile. It's not just our own children we care for, a child with a bump brings the whole village-strong response. No one at our school ever is left alone with a problem. And it's even sweeter now that it's almost over for me.

The seasons of our lives do turn, one to the next. It's funny but the things that seem to be drudgery at the time, are often the things that I miss the most when they're gone.

I am blessed and lucky.  Amen.

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