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Thursday, August 25, 2016


Coming Home

Sometimes home is a feeling, a sense. A space.

The St. Mary's parking lot is bustling with first-day-of-school excitement.  Excited kids and parents gathering bags of supplies and make their way eagerly into  school.

As I walk into St. Mary's  foyer holding a bag exploding of notepaper and paper towels,   I look down and see the sweet little ABC benches in the entry way. These are ones which students originally painted  years ago. The same benches which  the kids and I laid on their sides and cleaned together during this summers cleaning day. Together the kids scrubbed the legs with soapy water so excitedly and what a sense of satisfaction we all felt after.  On these ABC benches I have sat on many times while waiting for Nora and Stuey to come out of class. Sometimes with excitement, sadness, concern, love. The benches  bring me to the kid level.  

Ms. Schmitt, Ms. Huerta and Mr. Brian are in the lobby saying Hi, guiding kids on where to go. Tears well up inside me. What is is wrong with me, I momentarily wonder. My kids are in the 4th and 5th grade. This is my 6th year with kids at St. Mary's.

One would think my crying phase would be long over.  I follow behind Nora and Stuey up the stairs to Miss. Schmitt's room where they excitedly look for their desks and I am  filled with awe.

This beautiful room before me; each table with lovely cursive name tag, new posters of the world on the wall. I stand and soak it in. Trying to not look like I'm about to cry.

There are new math learning activities along the window and a new reading corner. Fun new classroom changes which I know my kids will appreciate. This room where my kids have learned for so many years under the guidance of  Miss. Schmitt. She knows their strengths, their needs, their quirks. She explains to the the kiddos where to put their things guiding them to their desks and I am filled with overwhelming gratitude.

The tears start flowing.

Nora and Stuey are at home, I am at home. This is home. 
This is the building, the energy, the people, the love which has surrounded my kids from day 1. This is the routine, ritual, structure which has supported them in growing as learners and even more importantly as people. .

Here, on this Sixth year of   going through this ritual, I am more attune than ever to the dedication this staff makes.
Because of them, we are here.

We are at home.


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