Back to school, just different…

He checked off the items on his school supply list, tried on 5 different suits, got his lunch bag and water bottle ready to go, packed his gym and cross country clothes and made sure he had his mask. He wrote his schedule down on a piece of paper and packed what would be his locker contents into his bag (this time, he included hand sanitizer). The first day of school for 8th grade would not look or feel the same. 25 emails, 10 different changes, last minute schedules and new requirements make this year much different. He won’t see all of his friends because many of them are on the other side of the alphabet. We are alternating between “in person” and “distance learning.” Every other day he will be in school then at home. It’s just different.

This will be the first time he has been in the school building since March. When some kids jokingly said, “See you next year,” we didn’t think they would be right. He didn’t get to say goodbye to his teachers or friends. Didn’t get to have the back-to-school night in person (it was via Google meets). This year will start out with masks, lunch in the gym, no lockers, and one-way traffic in the halls. No more “hanging out” before school. No more visiting with buddies at lunch…. just different.

It is difficult for my momma heart not to worry. Even though he’s 14, this year is just so different… for a kid who likes routine, how will he do? Will he be able to hear in class? Will he find all of his classrooms without being able to see them ahead of time? Will he be able to change out of and back into his suit in time? How will tomorrow go for distance learning? I can’t reassure him with specifics because I just don’t know. I guess I can tell him it’s just different. Life doesn’t always go as planned. Wear the mask, smile with your eyes, make lemonade out of the lemons and learn to adapt.

By the way, he probably did better than me today. Peace be with you on your journey of enough. We will get through this different time… hang in there.

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