Monkey Bars


Tomorrow starts another first day of school for me. I am taking another Spanish class (the 3rd in a series of 5 required for my degree) and a scripture class on Isaiah in the Old Testament (an elective, but an amazing one at that). I have the same anxiety coming on that I always get because my girl group that I had an entire regular school year with are either traveling the world, working so they can survive another school year out here, or closing the door on their formal career as a Spanish learner. So tomorrow I get to see my same teacher, which is fabulous, but I will have to reach out yet again and see if I can find someone that will want to do study groups and be a friend.

Why would I be so nervous about reaching out? I reach out once a day six times a week to unknown readers around the world (hopefully). 

There is something about the first day of school...anticipation, excitement, recognition of our ignorance--if we already knew the stuff we would not need to go to the classes. Right? I think that last part is the humbling experience that causes a lot of the nerves.

I remember the first day of kindergarten...a little bit. I remember being with my mom and seeing all the other children and wondering if I would have friends and be able to play.  The first thing I did was try the monkey bars and fell in love with my first swing. The monkey bars and I had a serious friendship going on from that day forward all through elementary school, and, believe it or not, I was in contention for Monkey Bars Champ a couple of times. While I made tons of friends throughout grade school, friends come and go, but the monkey bars were always there for me.

Student or not, all people have types of first days of school all the time. Learning new, hard things. Meeting new, different people. Wanting acceptance. Fearing rejection.  Just wanting to have friends and be able to play.

Whenever you find yourself in the midst of a first-day-of-school moment, look for the monkey bars in life. The equalizer, the commonality among us, the fun that can be found in anything if we have a healthy perspective. 

To this day when I take my children to the park, I will go and climb around and hang upside down sometimes because monkey bars rock! The best part about monkey bars for me today is that my little mini-me loves them too.

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