Rite of Passage
1:03 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Spring Brings Flowers, Sunshine and Fond Memories for This Mom

It’s spring and along with bunches of daffodils, robins, and ramp festivals, there is a feeling in the air of fresh starts and new beginnings.

Sarah Lowther Hensley
Sarah Lowther Hensley

After the winter we have had all I can say is “hallelujah!”

Ironically, though, it was a hint of autumn that made me think of new life this week.

As I drove by our elementary school, I noticed the sign in front heralding that the next day was “Kindergarten Registration Day.”

We are just about a year away from “High School Orientation”  but, boy, do I remember that earlier rite of passage.

It’s been several years, but it seems like yesterday that we walked through the doors of that very school with our son to get him signed up for kindergarten.

Registering your child for – kindergarten!

Do we have all the right paperwork?

Our son has a July birthday, so he is one of the youngest in his class. Should we have him start kindergarten this year or wait a year?

When school starts in the fall, will he like his teacher? Will WE like his teacher?

That day of “Kindergarten Registration” had “this-is-a-big-milestone-in-our-son’s-life-and-ours” written ALL over it.

And, truth be told, it WAS a milestone.

We reached it.

We passed it by.

And we have kept on traveling, through all the years of elementary school and into middle school, past more milestones.

Each milestone brought its own questions and anxieties and excitement and opportunities.

We reached them together and with plenty of supportive family and friends to cheer us along the way.

Life’s like that.

Each new opportunity holds its own questions and its own excitement and anticipation.

But, like the fresh, crisp blank sheets of paper in your backpack on that first day of school, each opportunity holds out the promise of a fresh start and unknown adventures, all just around the next bend.

So, I welcome spring and its traditional signs of “new” – forsythia and red bud and baseball.

But I’m saving some good thoughts for those parents and kids turning their cars into the grade school parking lots over the next few weeks, walking hand in hand into the building and signing up for great adventures.

The world awaits.

Go get ‘em!

Sarah Lowther Hensley is a former West Virginia Public Radio reporter and higher education administrator who lives in Fairmont, W.Va. Her writing appears on her blog Home Among the Hills.