I do love the job I have of trying to help build the school and making a difference in students’ and teachers’ lives. It is busy and demanding and I lots of people have acknowledged to me that our school has made progress. Friday morning, the school had a sleep-in. We have had a great fall, and been very busy. Lots of teachers and students were exhausted so an extra hour of sleep seemed a good way to give everyone a little bit of energy and a special perk.
Due to my workout routine, I arrived at school at the normal hour. As I was about to pick up the Globe and enjoy a peaceful few minutes, I thought of my two grandsons who have to be dropped off to their school between 8:05 and 8:15. Normally, this just doesn’t work for me most days because chapel on the Hill always starts at 8:15 sharp. I phoned my daughter, Stephanie, to see if “Papa” could swing by, say hello and take the boys to school. She had no objection and, in fact, kind of encouraged me. When I arrived, there they sat, all smiles, eating their breakfast. All was running according to their morning routine until my arrival threw breakfast into a complete tailspin.
We moved car seats from their car into mine, clicked them into place, got two book bags and loaded them in and somehow got two little guys into the back of my car. Off we went with our usual banter about how, when Papa was a little boy, “there was no fooling around” and their insistence that when their Papa was young, he got into lots of trouble. We got to school, waited in a line up, unclicked them, unpacked the book bags and herded them toward the door. It turns out that traffic in the KV is quite congested at 8:15 in the morning – something of which I was totally unaware. Off I went back to Stephanie’s house, removed the two car seats, transferred them back into mom’s car, reported in to my daughter that the car seats were safely returned and headed back to school. The entire episode took about 40 minutes to have two minutes of squealing after breakfast and a four minute drive.
But it was more than worth it. That sleep-in happened to give me that extra hour to have a special few moments with two kids I love very much and with whom I don’t seem to get to spend very much time. In light of the terrible, awful events that unfolded at about the same time on Friday in Newtown, Connecticut, I am reminded again that life can be fragile and fleeting. Every single moment we can have with those who matter most to us is a gift.