I’ve had to take so many moments lately, moments to pause and think about all these recent major news events in the US. It seems so trite to be here, going about my daily life. So much sadness. The images from Boston that I just can’t shake and the horrible West, Texas, explosion (just a small road trip from our house in Georgetown, we always stopped in West for kolaches any time we drove north on I-35). But… I won’t be defeated. I want to take these tragedies and use them as a reminder to cherish every moment. To create a world for my people that is peaceful and full of smiles. I want to.
It seems easy for my kids to be unaware, in this small untouched town. When we decided to raise our kids in Alaska, we thought it would be so important to make sure that we weren’t sheltering them–that they would be worldly, culturally, socially aware to the best of our abilities. I thought that it would make them understand and appreciate the choice we made to live here. I feel pretty ok with our job most days, and really it’s not that hard in our connected modern day.
I tuned into CNN online with the boys because they were asking questions about what was happening at the fertilizer plant in Texas. It lead to us looking at pictures and reading stories together, on both Boston and West. I felt the urge to pull the plug a few times, to shelter their innocence, and I did at a certain point. They were confused. I’m not sure I did the right thing. But we did have a lot of good discussion over it.
We did unplug for a bit this weekend–went on our first camping trip of the year with the boys’ scout pack. It was so good to see all those wonderful kids running unbridled through the woods. They all had so much fun. Of course, the mysterious “Bridging Bear” made his appearance, as he does every year at this camp. Always the first bear sighting of spring: that dark fuzzy creature across the river that only the kids see. Whether or not he exists, we’ll never know. But I do know it is still SO COLD at night that I hope those bears are still sleeping cozily away.
This annual camp means my boys are now another year deep into Cub Scouts, with this being Jonah’s last year before Boy Scouts (which he adamantly refuses to join). He slept in a tent alone with his friends… I missed him in ours but it was so nice to still have my Mighty actually wanting to cozy up to his parents for warmth and comfort from the wilds of the night. And Lola, too, of course. I didn’t see her the whole camping trip as she was off with her group of girls (all the “little sisters” who keep up surprisingly well with their older scout brothers–Alaskan girls kick ass, so they say). It’s strange to suddenly have kids who are self sufficient. It’s both wonderfully freeing and terribly lonely all at once.
The biggest part of last week for us: I registered Lola for kindergarten. I was so anxious in the weeks leading up to it. I felt like I had to make a decision with the direction of my life and what the next chapter for me is. I’ve been home with the kids for the last ten, going on eleven, years. What the heck am I to do now that they’ll all be in school?! But… I am starting to be more gentle with myself. I think I might need to make a slow transition rather than having it all laid out, months ahead of time. It’s not like having Lola at school will leave me with nothing to do! Gosh I’ll miss that little bird though. Honestly, I feel like I’ll be really lost without her with me all day. Good thing she’s over the moon excited about it or I might hide her away. She already told me she knew how to spell beer last night: A L A S K A N. So, I think maybe kindergarten might be a much better influence on her than hanging out with me all day.
first school bus ride
Hello, Monday. Time to get this ball rolling.