Over the weekend we bought school supplies. Me + school supplies = dangerous. My inner nerd comes raging out, and suddenly markers and Post-its and fresh pencils are jumping into my cart. I just can’t help myself. At least weather wise, fall still feels so far away, but the school year is quickly coming. This is Lydia’s first school year, so the transition seems even more significant.
Charlotte is in the middle of a transition too, to the big girl room with her sister. Last night was the first night, and they got in bed at eight o’clock. At ten o’clock the giggling was still going strong. At some point both girls came out because light-up ladybug was blinking which meant she needed fresh batteries. Lottie looked around at us with eyes as wide as doorknobs as if to say, “I can get out of bed whenever I want?! Freeeeeeeedom!!!” At some point they finally drifted off and woke up this morning saying it was “the best night ever.” I woke up saying, “Where’s the caffeine?”
Transitions are an inevitable part of life. Some come with No. 2 pencils or feisty toddlers free of their crib. Others come with searing pain and a life that feels ripped apart. Transitions make us feel vulnerable and leave us grappling for control. It is in these seasons where we are tempted to retreat, to let the shell close around us so the crab can feel safe. It is during these times that our insecurities scream the loudest, where we put on a happy face and make it seem like we have it all together. It is in these moments that we glance through social media and mistakenly whisper to ourselves, “I’m the only one.”
On the shelf with all our school supplies is a small chalkboard where I wrote, “We can do hard things.” Hard things like math and reading, yes, but also hard things like vulnerability, truth and courage.
“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.” Brene Brown