Glover Gardens will soon be an empty nest as our last millennial leaves for college in August. I’m combing through photos for the graduation party slide show and stumbled on this memory from his 2nd grade year. Texas schools had a wonderful No Place for Hate anti-bullying campaign with a poetry contest that year, and my kid’s submission was selected to be read aloud at the annual PTA meeting. I loved the poem at the time and still do.
Bullying, by Thomas Wenglinski
Any bullying here?
‘Cause I don’t want a sneer.
I hate it! I hate it! Yes I do!
I want to change things…That’ll be new!
In Texas, we have No Place for Hate…
If you don’t like it, go to another state.
I will never forget that sunny spring evening in Southeast Texas. The kidlet had a baseball game the same night as the PTA meeting. He read his poem in his baseball uniform and we left immediately afterward for the game.
Those were the days when dinner was eaten on the fly as we careened from one kid activity to the next and the issues of the day were making sure the requisite uniform was clean and findable and the homework got done somehow. The big highs were wins like poetry contests and pop fly balls that somehow landed in the baseball glove. I treasure those sleep-deprived halcyon days even while I look forward to the next step in his journey.
It is a beautiful thing to watch our kids grow into themselves and soar into their new journeys, but a little bittersweet, too.