Monday, September 26, 2011

Sitting By Yourself on the Bus (aka Growing Pains)

My son started kindergarten this year. When I asked him how his day went today, a shadow passed over his face and his eyes glistened. He blinked, pushing down the emotion.

"I rode the bus by myself," he said in a small voice.

"What do you mean? Don't you usually sit with your other two friends? Were they gone today?"

"No, they were there. They didn't sit with me. I had to sit by myself."

Yep, that sound you heard was a mom's heart breaking, mostly because I know there's nothing I can do to fix it. No Band-Aid can fix the hurt that comes with being rejected. No ice pack can heal the pain of friends turning away from you.

I can't even offer him a promise that things will get better, that kids will grow up and learn the error of their ways. It still happens to adults. Not as often, sure, but it hurts just as much when it does.

We all want to belong, to be loved, to be accepted. I want to wrap my arms around him and keep him safe from the pain of the world. But I can't.

All I can do is love him, pray for him, and pray for his friends, too. And lead by example so that maybe he won't make the same mistakes.