All five of my babies have spent two years of the roller coaster of their adolescence roaming the halls of this junior high:
Oh it hasn’t always looked like that. This is the back entrance where Lucy and I ride our bike, and it happens to be in the middle of a make-over at the moment, changing to green and gray from an orangy-brown. But no matter what color it is, I am endeared to that place.
I think of all those children of mine have learned and how they have grown through the highs and lows in that safe place.
Max was shy as could be but made a funny video for an assignment that the social studies teacher still shows to new students. Elle wore purple jeans and rode a skateboard. And got cut from the soccer team. Grace became the “manager” of the volleyball team since she didn’t quite make it. Claire valiantly tried out for the cheer team, was the only one of her friends not to make it which eventually led her to volleyball. Lucy maneuvered the halls with her white cane and learned Braille. And bumped along behind me on the tandem bike most days, our fingers turning to ice in the winter and sweltering in the summer.
That place holds so many memories for us.
And as of Thursday we have checked out. Crossed those junior high memories off of our family list forever.
The two of us pedaled on over to the traditional before-school-donut-gathering my friend hosts every year.
I’m so grateful for these mamas who have raised such kind children.
Then we made our way over to that junior high for the very last time.
Past “Mr. Wonk,” the pesky tree that grows out over the sidewalk on our last day.
Part of me wanted to sob, but other parts celebrate. It was a good place that held my children in the throes of learning life.
And that celebration part was what Lucy and I felt more than anything else as we rode that last ride.
Gratitude for all the learning.
All the friends.
The awesome principal.
The teachers who sat with me for each of lucys IEP meetings and made me cry because of their patience and love for my girl.
Growing up and letting go is hard to do, but it’s sure been a good ride❤️