I read this new book: Grit for Girls and Young Women: Why the Most Difficult Challenges are So Important -- a gift from a dear friend to my daughters. She had no idea what those words did to me.
Tears filled my eyes, succumbed to all the emotions of this spring and summer and the year of 2020. Especially, a summer of the not-so-relaxing, let-it-all-go, think-about-nothing kind of summer. But a summer of hearing data, growing concerns, and waiting. waiting. waiting. to hear plans for returning to school this fall.
I guess I didn't realize how much I was holding in.
My ten year old daughter, Madison, walked into the room.
"This book from Karen is awesome. I can't wait to read it with you. They are full of words that you need to hear, but I guess I did too --"
I caught my breath and asked, "Can I get a hug?"
"Why? What's wrong, Mommy?" She pleaded as I walked over to her and we sat together embraced on the couch. I kissed the top of her head, trying to take a deep breath. She held on, laying her head on me ... knowing I needed time.
Because the tears came. And a flurry of worry poured out of my mouth.
"I'm worried about going back to school and the safety of the teachers. I'm worried about leaving you and your sister."
"But, why? Why do you have to go back to school if you are teaching remotely?" A great question a ten year old is asking.
"I know. Some things don't make sense. Everyone is trying to make the right decisions to keep us safe. But choice would be helpful in what works for every family."
I rubbed her back, played with her ponytail.
Another deep breath.
"I'm sorry. I just had an adult conversation with you. Please know, this is my worry, not yours.
Really we need to turn all our worries to God...
Thank you for listening. Everything will work out."
And we sat there. Together. For another quiet moment.
A gift. A beautiful gift from my daughter of time, patience, understanding, embracing, listening. Everything we need more of in this world.