Corona Virus Quarantine Day #158: Grace through Gross: August 26, 2020:
Today was a tough day.
While it had its own taste of bitter sweetness to it, it was all so much to take in.
After 6 months of time at home together our 5 children, all of them, went to school for the first time. I am so grateful to SHOJ grade school and all the teachers and staff there for making that possible. I know the kids need it, I know they crave time with their teachers and their friends.
I know all of these things.
I also know that I was profoundly sad when I walked away from that building. The “new normal” I had grown to expect was now completely different. Fletcher is now a full time student for the next 12 years at least. No more morning trips to the zoo or short visits to Deanna Rose to see his favorite baby goats. He is going to spend the majority of his day with someone who isn’t me.
All of my kids are.
And…for the past 6 months they’ve been with me every single minute of every single day.
I miss them…already. So I cried a little today. I was a little worked up today.
Now, I won’t sit here and tell you all the minutes of the 6 months were joy filled…because they weren’t. There were hard moments, even ugly moments. But I found myself feeling deeply sad today because I began wondering if I used all those moments to the best of their ability.
Now, logically, I know, if I even go back and read my own words I will know that we absolutely did. Man, we had fun. We baked all the things. We painted all the things. We hiked all the trails. We biked all the trails. We swam in all the pools and even in our pond. We played a lot of sports. We watched all the good movies. We ate all the popcorn and stayed up past our bedtime.
We. Had. A lot. Of. Fun!
So what the hell am I sad about?
Truth be told, I’m not sure. I guess I’m just a little overwhelmed by all of it. And today, I discovered that to feel this way is 1,000% ok. Grace.
We all need grace right now. I need it more than I ever have.
I want to be the best wife, daughter, mom, sister, friend, teacher, coach…everything I can be. I will fail. But I will try my hardest and at the end of the day that’s all I can do.
So I will keep smiling behind my ridiculous mask. I will keep pushing myself, doubting myself, challenging myself, sharing my struggles and my heart with others because that is what makes me, me and keeps me sane.
I will continue to miss my kids because our kids are awesome and fun to be around. Today felt like the first “first” day of school for all of them in a way. But it was also so very different. They were in their masks. I didn’t hug all the people I would usually hug. There was a heaviness in the air, but also a buzz of excitement. It’s amazing that those two things can exist at the same time in one place.
When I got home from in-service and practice today Fletcher started crying the second I got home. I wasn’t in the door 90 seconds before he started. He cried for 90 minutes. Nothing I tried got him to stop. It had already been a long and challenging day. This is not what I needed.
But then I remembered, he needs grace, just like me. He just came off a long weekend vacation with his cousins where he slept very little, swam a lot and even jumped off a 25-foot cliff. Then today, he went to big boy school for the first time ever and came home and played with his siblings for hours.
Today, he needed grace. So we let him cry (as hard as it was to hear it, and as much as I wanted it to stop). He cried for 90 minutes, then he slept. He slept on the couch while the rest of us ate dinner. He woke up to Gigi sitting on his back licking his face. He woke up laughing.
My heart was a little restored in that moment.
After that we went upstairs and made his teacher a bracelet with his big brother Finley.
His siblings gave him grace. In fact, I’d argue kids give grace more generously than adults do. We could all learn from the natural beauty of a child’s giving and grace filled heart.
It was a challenging day, in a very high class problem kind of way. I struggled through it.
Everyone around you right now, I’d argue, is a little overwhelmed, a little uncertain and A LOT lacking control in their life (damn rona). So if we could all just remember to give a little grace in the gross…that’d be good…it’d be real good!
I know I need it!
I’ll leave you with pictures from the first day of school.
The many faces of Fletcher! This guy was so excited for his first day! My highlight was on the way to school we were all talking and he said “hey mom, I love you!” I carried that with me all day long. He was also very concerned that he’d get to see all his friends!
Of all our kiddos Fiona definitely had a more difficult time in quarantine. She missed her people. Fiona is the spunkiest, sweetest, smartest little 8 year old I know. She fiercely loves her friends and anything competitive. She loves school and her teachers, so she was also very excited to go to school today! The highlight of my day today was the show her and Ellen put on for us before bedtime. Gaston from Beauty and the Beast!
This kid has a heart of solid gold. He is the most thoughtful 10 year old boy I’ve ever known. Loves huge, laughs loud and is a loyal brother and friend. He loves all the sports. All of them and seems to really be a student of the game. Super quick on this feet and in his wit. He was pretty pumped to go to school today to see his people. I missed his hugs when he was at school today. He gives the best hugs.
It’s hard to believe this 5 foot beauty is in 5th grade. She has the sweetest and purest heart and can read a book faster than anyone I know. She fiercely loves her friends and is so excited to play 5th grade volleyball this year! She loves school and learning so she was pretty pumped to be there today! Ellen also stole the show today in the Gaston performance that took place in our basement!
The oldest Dorsey boy. The most tolerant, patient and hard working kid around. If something needs to be done, he just gets up and does it, no questions asked. He’s my see a need and fill it kid (and man do I love that about him). He loves basketball more than anyone and spends more time shooting than he does anything else. He’s the best big brother to all his siblings and goes along with all their crazy plans. He was also very excited to be back in school.
Sadly Daddy had an early meeting today so he missed all the fun this morning. But…Gaga got in on the action!
Had to get my mommy and kindergartner picture done and Cooper wanted one with me too! The sweetest heart I swear! And yes…Fletcher is still rocking his mullet.
The kids all wanted to go with Fletcher to his classroom. They were so genuinely excited fro him. He was so proud to have them there. It melted my heart just a bit! Ugh, I wish the mask wasn’t there so you could see how big his smile was!
Even JESUS wore a mask today! The kids were a huge fan of this one!
Our 5 Sacred Heart of Jesus Cardinals. Yikes. That’s insane! They will all be in the same building for 4 more years!
The cousin picture. Our kids get to go to school with 2 of their 9 cousins. It’s pretty awesome. This picture looks a little different this year!
The aftermath…90 minutes of uncontrolled crying will do that to you!