Bring all your #BrownBoyJoy

As back to school day pictures flood the social media channels, I feel tender-hearted looking at the three of us. Having taught middle school for fourteen years I know full well that this picture may become more precious to me than most.

Marcel’s sweet hold on me, and his joyful innocent anticipation of all that middle school could be will soon shift. A former principal I worked with for a decade would always start the 6th grade back-to-school night the same way; “You are going to witness the greatest change in your child this year since they started their school career. So buckle up. It’s going to be a great ride.”

As his mother I want to protect that innocence and joy with every ounce of Mama-bear I have in me. As an educator and parent of a now 8th grader too, I know my effort will be better spent accepting, adjusting to and celebrating all that he will become.

As a mother of two beautiful brown boys I start the year with a larger prayer that they are seen and safe in their #BrownBoyJoy by their teachers and peers. That I will not be called in again this year to navigate how the school could or should have handled that racial slur differently. Or find myself on the phone carefully laying out how the curriculum does not accurately represent people of color, or does so in a demeaning or destructive way. Mostly I pray my sons will always walk through the halls standing tall and proud in their glorious bodies with their full hearts and hopeful and hungry minds.

May all of our babies believe in their potential to achieve whatever they imagine their highest version of themselves to become.

(Seven years ago today.)

Screen. Screamed. Screening.

The kindergarten screening was today. Too soon to tell just how relieved he is, but here’s to hoping! His teacher is clearly all about reassurance and welcoming. His classroom looks magnificent. Sam happened upon his new teacher too, who also is a rock star. No, really. Musician by night, amazing educator by day. He saw the names of his friends, and felt better too-although he doesn’t reveal 1/100th of what his little bro does. I have to remember to check in sometimes.

Because I’m doing this post on a mobile device-I’ve got the pictures a little out of order (flip the first 2), with no patience left to discover how to fix that. I have a little transition triggered head cold telling me to slow down… HA! Thanks for all the supportive comments on and off line in the last few days with all of our life shifts. We’re going to spend a couple of days chilling with Uncle this weekend in his new home. Everyone is really excited about that too. Bring it on!

And yes, Sam is wearing a self adhesive yellow mustache in one of the photos. Doesn’t every dentist give them out?!


2. Check in


3. Release


4. Exhale


5. Reflect