Open letter to my kids

So gang you may be too little to really grasp the enormity of your present situation but you are living through some very strange times. You have not been to school two months and now we know that you will not return for another nearly four months. Airports are closed, parks are closed, movie theatres and bowling lanes and dozens of different stores are all dark. You are missing your friends and your family and all those hugs and kisses from grandparents and aunts and uncles. They all miss you too! You are giving up theme parks and fairs and summertime adventures on road trips across the country. Camping is still up in the air and the cottage seems oh so far away. People are getting sick and you have witnessed ambulances on our street and been a part of some great community projects to donate to senior residences or cheer for first responders. You are full of questions. You are brave though and hopeful and so willing, even when many adults are not, to give up all those things to help others. You have supported me through working from home by being patient when I am busy and keeping the noise to a dull roar during conference calls. You have found joy in watching our plants grow, in finding new trails to hike, in making up games that the three of you can play together. We have had at home movie nights and nearly wore out our shoes walking. You have learned to use video chat and tried as much as you can to stay connected to others. I think there are a million and one things we adults can learn from you, about being present, being grateful and being compassionate. You are willing to give up summer camp, kindergarten graduation, birthday parties and more to help others. While many of us tall folks hoard toilet paper and gripe about hair salons, there you are just chugging along making lemonade as you go. When I start fretting about schoolwork you remind me that you are always learning. It may not look like school but this week we learned about big things – how immune systems work, what karma is, how everyone is connected and how so much of what we think is “normal” comes down to where and when we live in this world. We talk – all the time! And while those little moments do not seem like epic adventure memories, I like to think they come together to be so much more. I am not saying that there are not going to be tears or frustrations or days when it’s hard to see the sunshine for the clouds but I do know that I will end this year confident that you are all resilient, mesmerizing, incredible humans who have so many gifts to share. Thank you for being my lighthouse in this particular moment in time. Thank you for encouraging me to stay the course. By teaching you I am reminded myself of those most important lessons – to be kind, to be generous, to be grateful, to be present and to give love freely. The year 2020 will go down in history for many things, some of them incredibly heartbreaking but in those memories, will shine your sparks.

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