A Prayer For The School Year

Well, mamas, here we go again.

Another school year with so many unknowns. Last year was a year unlike any other in known educational history. Our kids and families endured challenges we couldn’t even dream up twenty or thirty years ago when we were in school.

This past year, many of us sent our kids to school at the kitchen table or in their bedrooms. Computer screens replaced the traditional classroom, and for those who were in a classroom, smiling teachers’ faces were hidden behind masks.

The struggle was real, and the consequences of a year spent in remote learning are still being revealed. But the bright side is that kids are resilient. We don’t give them enough credit for their ability to adapt and bounce back. Prior to the pandemic, we parented our children with an attitude of “give them every advantage.” Perhaps clearing the path so our children don’t experience any obstacles isn’t doing them any favors. Perhaps our parents and grandparents weren’t so far off when they tried to remind us that adversity builds character. Maybe Grandpa and Grandma didn’t actually have to trudge to school in the snow, uphill, both ways, but they knew something about facing adversity that we didn’t really know much about until this past year.

Remember the movie Annie staring Carol Burnett and Albert Finney? (If you haven’t seen it in a while, do yourself a favor and plan a family movie night.) At the end of the movie, after Annie overcomes adversity and avoids nearly being kidnapped, she and Daddy Warbucks sing the duet “I Don’t Need Anything But You.” There is a line in that song that has been playing on a loop in my head as I prepare to face this school year.

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