Posted by: Leigh Reynolds | September 10, 2011

The Walk to School

Last week I was walking Tess to school.. One of the many blessings of a home office; I get to put Wil in the stroller and we all go for a walk each day. It was only the 4th or 5th day of school, so it still felt fresh and new and exciting. A new start; a new adventure.

We got up to the door, Tess kissed Wil good-bye and she skipped off to school with a huge smile on her face. We waved a cheerful good-bye and turned to go. Little kids were scurrying off to class, with shiny new backpacks, pristine new shoes, and freshly coordinated back-to-school outfits. I was enjoying the  joyful scene.

That’s when I saw her. She was precious and petite, her hair in high pigtails. She was wearing an adorable coordinating outfit – white, without a spot or stain, obviously brand new. She was pulling her brand new pink roller backpack behind her. And she was crying. Just standing there in the walkway, crying.

Teachers were manning their post at the doors and at the drop-off line. Cars were rushing off, parents quick to get to work or get on with their day. Other kids rushing by, excitedly greeting friends they’d missed over the summer and looking forward to an exciting day ahead. I’m not sure anyone even noticed her… But I did.

I walked over to her and told her my name and asked her hers. “Mila,” she said through her tears, “I want my mommy.” A tear fell to the pavement.

Another happy child scurried by. A teacher calls out, “Hurry, the bell is going to ring, kids!”

Mila said again, through tears, “I want my mommy.”

I leaned down to her level and said, ” I know, honey. The first few days of something new can be scary, huh?” She nodded. Then I asked if I could walk with her a bit.

“Are you in Kindergarten?” I asked. She was. I told her about how my daughter went to kindergarten here and loved it. She was going to have a wonderful adventure this year and she would be just fine. She wiped her tears, took a breath, and we made it to the door. I told her to have a wonderful day, that she would do just great and to have fun.

“Are you ready to go to school, Mila?”

“Uh Hun,” she nodded. And she went through the door and off to school.

As Wil and I walked home, I thought about Mila and our short walk.

We all have tough days, times we’re scared, times we feel alone – even when there are many people around us rushing merrily by. Sometimes what we all need is just someone to stop, ask us how we’re doing, and walk beside us a while. Someone to help us realize we are not alone.

No matter how much we all try to hide it, we all have fears. We all have troubles. We all have ‘stuff’ we are dealing with. And we are all walking this road together. We each have a choice – stop and walk beside someone else who needs a friend, or walk on by.

But none of us are ever really alone. We all have a Father in Heaven that is right there beside us. Telling us it is going to be OK. He sees the road ahead and knows it holds great things for us, if we just walk His way.

Sometimes we struggle to see Him, to know He is there, so He uses us to show His love to others, if we just let Him. Sometimes, it’s helping a little girl feel less afraid as she walks into a new school, away from her mom for the first time. Sometimes it’s sitting with a friend who is having marital trouble, listening to their story and sharing a bit of your own and some things you’ve learned along the way. It’s all about being open to the opportunity and being open to someone else’s need. It’s all about being open to being used as a blessing to someone else in need, so that God can be seen through you.

Because, really, we are all walking this road together…

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