I made a big phone call today. Like, huge. As much as I've sort of looked forward to the opportunity, I've also been dreading it.
I called to register my boys for kindergarten.
When we first received the paperwork in the mail last month, Andy picked it up and said, "What? We didn't sign up for this!" Of course, he was kidding. But I had those same thoughts. Our boys? Are they really old enough? Are they ready? Did we teach them what they need to know? Will they be alright without me standing over their shoulder?
You'd think we were sending them away to Switzerland for boarding school. You can see the back of the elementary school from our front porch.
I've been home with them every single day of their lives. I've invested my blood, sweat and tears into these two dimple-faced and carefree boys. Literally They're the reason I resigned my job as a sixth-grade teacher. Why I devote my time to my Mothers of Preschoolers group, story time at the library and ask for memberships to the zoo and science museum for Christmas. Why the majority of books I read nowadays are either Dr. Seuss or about helping my kids through transitions. Why I started blogging four years ago.
Sending them to kindergarten acknowledges that they are ready to start applying what they've learned. Puts them into a bigger sea of influence. Open water. And that feels a little scary.
But the events that have unfolded over the past few weeks made this much more emotional than normal.
Kingergarten? Will Ben be around to even enjoy his first year? Is it even worth enrolling him? Should I keep the boys together or should we separate them? Perhaps I ought to reconsider homeschooling. But just for him or Jack, too? How might it affect his classmates if something were to happen in the middle of the school year?
Moms, please tell me your thoughts escalate this quickly, too. Over the years, I've gotten really good at jumping to conclusions. I'm pretty much an expert.
But after a wonderful movie night with my family tonight and seeing the simple joy of my son being able to take a bath with his siblings... it just feels silly to worry about all of those questions. When has God not provided for us? As my mom always said, "God is never late, He is rarely early, but He is always on time." Always.
God has provided wisdom when we needed answers. He's provided insight when there was confusion. Simply because we've asked. Funny, how fuzzy our memories get when we have new circumstances ahead of us.
My mind brought me to this passage in Matthew chapter six tonight:
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
I especially appreciated being reminded of the simple fact that our lives cannot be extended simply by worrying. Honestly, it accomplishes nothing. Only makes you... worry. And the fact that I really don't need to figure everything out for the next ten years... that's kind of helpful. Because I can barely decide how to spend our day tomorrow much less tackling the entire next year!
I will not inspire world peace. At least not tonight. Or solve world hunger. I won't discover a cure for cancer or even be able to find anything in my basement (which, trust me, would be a miracle.) It's just not going to happen.
For tonight, I'm going to go to sleep. Lord willing, I'm going to wake up in the morning and enjoy watching Ben eat breakfast at home for the first time in five days. And the biggest decision of his day will be deciding whether to eat Raisin Bran or Honey Bunches of Oats.
God is much better at handling the huge, cosmic questions. For me, I think I'll just stick with the whole "one day at a time" thing.
And for right now, I've got two little boys who are very excited about starting kindergarten in the fall. The very same school I began attending more than twenty-five years ago.