We got to school late again. This was our third late slip this week after an almost perfect year. We've been late, just not late slip late. I got the slips, told the secretary I'd be back and headed down the hall with Aris. She was hugged, prayed over and sent in with her late slip. I headed back down the hall and slipped into the office. When the secretary came over "I need help" were the words that came pouring out of my mouth. She listened sympathetically and decided that I needed to meet with the Child and Youth Worker, Steph(not her real name).
This was kinda awkward. I had a baby on my back and my four year old in tow. I knew Steph by sight, but we hadn't been introduced. Off down the hall we went to several tables that were set up in the corner. Kian came out of the back carrier and Zane was set up with markers and paper. Then we began to chat. I was obviously stressed and feeling uncomfortable. Pouring out my heart to someone I don't know feels weird. I didn't know that God had a treat in store for me.
For about an hour, Steph and I chatted. We laughed, felt the sting of tears, discussed kids, infidelity, alligators, doulas, anxiety and forensic anthropology. I walked in feeling at the end of my rope. I came out with confidence and a smile on my face. We shared a bit of our lives, of being a mom and loving kids that are going through hard times. Our failures weren't taboo, there was no pretence, no "prettying-up" of the picture. There wasn't any judgement either. Her honesty offered me hope. My honesty in return offered acceptance. There were quite a few times when one of us exclaimed "You get me! No one else does!" It was a very good conversation. She's someone I'd like to keep as a friend.
On the walk home, Aris said that Steph came to visit her. They had a good chat and Aris was feeling much better about life. She said that Steph is going to come visit her everyday and that Aris is looking forward to their conversations. The change in Aris from the last couple of days is remarkable. A huge burden has been lifted off of my shoulders!
What started in failure ended in success. This morning was pretty black and bleak. Thankfully this picture looks much brighter and better at the end of the day. Now, to get to school on time tomorrow! :)