Jonz started school this week.
This entire homeschool-to-public-school adventure has been filled with guidance, tender mercies, small miracles, and confirmation.
We have been led to a path we weren't even really considering, to a specific school, and to a specific teacher. The right way just set itself in front of us with large signs that read, "this way!" Though I admit...I'm not the best sign reader;) The only hiccup came in selecting a track assignment. Bret and I discussed and looked at the calendar and picked what we thought was best. Later though, it became clear to me that that wasn't the place for Jonzy. After stewing over it for a couple weeks, I submitted a track change request and wouldn't you know it- they were able to make the change for us.
The whole process from homeschool to track change happened in fairly steady fashion from the beginning of April up until the middle of June.
Then, all there was to do was get him outfitted and wait for school to actually start.
As the weeks went on and school got closer, I started to question whether this was really what we were supposed to do. Perhaps I'd misunderstood the promptings...I got help over these weeks: reminders of all that happened on the path to getting him into school, peace when I asked-yet again-if we were on the right path, etc. But Doubt and I are old pals and I have a hard time shutting him up. And then Jonz started to show his doubts too. Excitement gave way to, "Mommy, I can't go to school because I'll miss you all day." Or, "...because I won't make any friends," or, "...because I want to watch a movie," etc. etc. Mostly I understood this was just him being nervous and once he received more explanation and got used to this routine that he'd be fine. But Doubt snuck in thoughts of, "maaaaaaaybe we're not supposed to do this..."
And so I prayed.
The few times that despair threatened to take over at the prospect of sending my sweet and innocent boy out into the world with all its wolves, I prayed for peace and more confirmation that he was supposed to be going to school and that he would be protected (physically and spiritually). For the most part, that peace has stayed with me since April. It was just the times like after a family home evening lesson about pornography that doubt started to gain strength over the peace and extra prayer was needed to bring it back.
Despite all the inspirations and events that led up to the first day of school, I knew I needed something more in the week preceding.
You know me- I cry. Strike that. I blubber. It's my physical response to emotion, hormones, and seemingly random things as well.
I did not want to be a sobbing mess. I knew it would not be good for Jonz. He needed to see a confident and happy mom as he stepped off into the great unknown. And as I pondered this fear of scaring my son with my tears a thought occured to me. Two birds, one stone.
I started praying for something very specific. I prayed that I would be blessed with peace and strength on that first day of school. And that that would not only be felt, but also be manifested in a lack of tears. As someone who cries even when at peace, I knew that if I was able to make it through this situation without tears (even though all physical and emotional factors were combined against me) that it would only be because of divine intervention.
And so I asked that He please intervene and confirm to me that we were doing precisely what we are supposed to by blessing me with peace and the strength to not cry.
I'm here to tell you, He answered that prayer and then some...and then some more.
Not only did I not cry at all about this since that first prayer- I didn't cry when I hugged my firstborn good-bye that morning. I didn't cry when I saw how nervous and flustered Jonz was trying to figure out whether to follow the line of kids or stay with his teacher (I caught his eye and gave him a smile and thumbs up. Then he seemed to remember that we'd talked about asking his teacher what to do if he ever didn't understand what was going on because he walked right up to her and got directions.). I didn't cry when I found after being in the office that the school was outside for an assembly and I was blessed to see my boy dancing to the music while in line and realized God gave me the opportunity to see that Jonz was just fine and already comfortable in this new situation. I didn't cry when I drove away from the school. I didn't cry when Al suddenly realized what was going on and said, "Mom! Jonzy's not in our car!" I didn't cry when I fleetingly lamented twice during the day that he wasn't under my watchful care but some strangers' instead. I didn't cry!
Seriously, folks! I didn't cry all day long. Me! The crier. Lindsey did not shed a single tear. No constricted throat, no puffy eyes, no blotchy face, nooooooo tears.
I wish I could express to you how amazing this actually is. But honestly, I don't think anyone but me can truly comprehend how incredible of a feat this is. Perhaps those close to me understand, but even they don't know how often I battle the salty discharge. And even beyond the lack of tears, I felt right all day. This is right. Jonz is on the path that will suit him best. Right, peace, right. Even my nagging headaches and back pain were gone all day! For our family, for now: This. Is. Right.
And as I see this post has gotten interminably long, I'll end it for you.
I'm thankful for all the guidance and blessings received as my family travels this new road. I am thankful for answered prayers. I'm thankful for a Father in heaven who answered my prayers in such a bountiful, clear, and intensely personal way. I'm thankful He is ever patient with my weakness. I'm thankful for a strong, good, and courageous seven year old that I am blessed to call my son.
What are you thankful for today?