Back to School . . . Kind of . . . Sort of . . . Please . . .

Back to school. Back to school . . . these kids are going back to school. Some at home . . . some in person . . . I really prefer the real school version . . .

Yada . . . yada . . . I’d like to thank Billy Madison and my teenage years for the inspiration for that little ditty.

This is where we have landed in the land of COVID Pandemic schooling. My oldest will return to in person, real deal school, with precautions, of course, in just over a week. My youngest’s school will start virtually for three weeks (womp . . . womp . . . ), and then shift to in person, also with precautions, following that.

And although I’d love, like love more than anything, for life to just go back to normal. That’s not where we are at this point. So this is how it will look, and I fully support the decisions and effort that our kids’ schools are putting into making this year as safe and smooth as possible.

Coming to the decision to allow my kids to go back, in person, wasn’t the easiest thing for me. I am incredibly risk adverse while my husband is more of (okay, a lot of) a risk taker. As one friend put it, I’m 10000% the brakes, and he’s full speed ahead, pedal to floor, the gas. If it were up to me, we’d never move forward . . . ever, and if it were up to him, we’d never slow down. God knew what He was doing when He put us together, and as we’ve learned to listen to one another, we’ve found we balance each other out quite well.

My family’s health is very important to me, and I take it seriously. But as we weighed all of the pros and cons for our family (which will look different for every single family), back to school, in person, was the best choice for our kids. It may not be the best choice for your kids and family right now, and that’s okay. And things may change, and we may all have to pivot and pivot again (I mean we are all feeling the sofa stairwell scene from Friends right now), and guess what? Also, okay.

What’s not okay?

The judgment laced posts and comments I see out there. If someone is choosing not to send their kids in person, instead of screaming that they’re living in fear, maybe stop to consider that they are making the wisest choice for their family. And if someone is choosing to send their kids back, that’s not necessarily reckless, but it may be that their kids and family need something different than yours. Let’s be kind, and further, let’s allow that to extend beyond school decisions. Let’s treat one another with huge amounts grace and respect as we figure out how to navigate this world in the midst of and then following this pandemic. Let’s allow that grace and respect to drive our decisions in how we treat others, and let’s show up to support one another.

I know I don’t owe any answers to anyone, but I’ve seen so many discussions regarding this very thing lately. While I think we’d all love to not think about or discuss the “stupid coronavirus” in any way, form, or fashion, it’s very much a driving force in our lives right now. I’ve had numerous messages asking, from both a former educator’s and a mom’s viewpoint, what I think the right answer is. And my answer remains, there’s no wrong answer. If you love your kids, and they’re safe, secure, and provided for, then the right answer is the one that is best for your family. Whether it be school, sports, church, family gatherings, or a myriad of other things, pray about it, weigh it out, and trust that God has given you the wisdom and resources you need to make the right decisions for your family both now and in the future. And no matter what choices you make, I’m here to say, “Good for you!”. And I promise never to tear you down for those choices.

And for good measure, I’ll add, I’m still not here for homeschooling, but God is really teaching some sort of lesson on flexibility in this season. I’m trying y’all. I promise.

“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32

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