One morning this spring I was running a bit late and I walked into school in the midst of a group of children who had just gotten off the bus. They were fresh from bed and still a little sleepy, so they were walking in single file or in small groups of two or three, sometimes talking softly along the way. These boys and girls were quiet, yet they were also energized in a way that reflected their eagerness to see what today would bring.
Then I breathed in deeply and caught the scent of clean bodies, washed clothes, and maybe a little shampoo, too. I hadn’t been surrounded by that fragrance since my own children were small. I said a prayer of thanks for the parents who got them ready to have a good day. And I felt more ready to face the day myself.
Then of course I remembered other schools where I have taught whose students didn’t come to school so clean and well prepared. So I said a prayer for those little ones and for the day that was ahead for them as well.