Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Tribe of Small People

With my identity tag around my neck, I made my way to the cafeteria. Gabby came running down the hall, "I lost my lunch bag." We walked to the office. No lunch bag. We went to the lost and found. No lunch bag. We looked in the gym. No lunch bag. We were off to a great start.

"Don't worry. I'll buy your lunch today," I said as she took my hand determined to keep me on track. Trays were taken. Pizza, peas, peaches and salad were our choices. Gabby explained all of it as we moved along the line despite the fact that I'd been to lunch with her many times before. We sat with the other kids. Those who knew me stopped by for a hug. She proudly introduced me to new friends. A few of the boys I'd seen before shyly looked at me and said 'hi'. As usually happened in the elementary school cafeteria, one annoying child takes over conversation. I'm thrilled when quiet time is called.

While she goes to recess, I peek in on my eldest grandchild. Her teacher asks if I would like to listen to them read a play. Syd smiles when she sees me and delights that I have stopped in. It is good thing.

Gabby and I stand in line waiting to go back to the classroom for her special program. I am by far the biggest kid in line. The children are excited seeing all of the parents waiting. They stand wiggling and nervous reading their scripts while parents snap pictures and gather memories.

I had a Thanksgiving feast yesterday. I didn't sit with pilgrims, but I was with a tribe of delightful children ready to create a new world.

I am thankful for family, for good friends, for a world given to me in which I have an opportunity to make changes for the better. I have come to a new world at each age that has greeted me. I will learn from the natives, even if it means sitting at a small table surrounded by those who smell like children, who ask if I'm Gabby's grandma and who run and play just as I did once long ago.

I am blessed. Happy Thanksgiving.

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