My son attends a school that was severely damaged by the floods that came through Saint Louis in July. Their entire basement was gutted and all the rooms they use for their sensory activities were destroyed. We started school a week later than most and had to readjust everything with classrooms now in a different location. Change is scary for us. Transitions too and the beginning of the school year is always fraught with anxiety for adjustment and routine and everything else that comes with living life on the spectrum.

Yesterday I picked my son up from school later than usual and I was struck by how calm he was. The old him would have been crying and freaking out wondering if I was coming to pick him up even if I was 5 minutes late. He hates not going home when everyone else is going home. Seeing him, calm made me feel reassured that we are going to have a great school year after all, floods, transitions and all. It’s these little things that matter for me these days. That and seeing the love the students gave back to their teachers for everything thing they have been doing for them especially now with all the change.

I am a proud mother of a child on the spectrum and seeing their humanity on display even as chalk drawing for their teachers car parking lot as a way to thank them for all they do, is my keep for today. Floods may come. Change, transitions, tossing out the old, adjusting to the new may coming along. But in all things, keep the love for the little things in mind, like chalk drawings to say thank you to others.

Dear New Year,

What to make of thee, from all who seek your new? This time, our hunger grows day by day. For paths our feet are prepared to walk through. This rich promise for new the morning sun will not betray.

To begin again with repeating this cycle with you. To bask in your glory like morning dew across leaves at the bottom of trees. To marvel at the debut of a life in light, in view. Is to begin with grace, like the simple elegance of a daffodil.

So I close with a prayer old, yet full of renewed blessings. That when the fullness of time comes. That you will bless us and keep us. That you will shine upon us and be gracious to us. That you will be kind and give all who seek you peace, this new year of yearning. This new year of being in light. Amen.

Happy New Year to all of you and may your 2022 be full of God’s blessings. Amen.