Thursday, August 27, 2009

Another New Year

Time can be measured in so many ways. As Jonathan Larson said in his lyrics for Rent,
525,600 minutes
how do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
In 525,600 minutes -
how do you measure a year in the life?
For many of us, especially those who work with children and students, we measure the passing of time according to the school year. When Fall is nearing and the first day of a new school year arrives, we once again go on pilgrimage to our office supply stores for unsharpened pencils, undefiled spirals, fresh erasers we futilely hope we'll never need. (Yea, that picture is me in my Freshman year in HS - it was 1978. Note the bolo tie, the corduroy vest, and the curling iron skill.)

When I was young, I remember being anxious about what to wear the first day and what kinds of folders and notebooks I had. I remember those folders that were like intricate coloring pages, and using study halls (and probably actual class time, truth be told) to color them in). Fall is when the marching band would take over our lives, filling our house with practicing, keeping track of uniform pieces and memorizing music. Fall was cold nights on rickety-feeling bleachers watching football games with my best friends, laughing at the trombone and tuba players and their antics, and wondering who was going to ask whom out.

I'm not sure what Si uses to measure time. Would it be Boy Scout trips? Badges earned? Birthdays? School years? Boxes of Cheezits? I know he's not really anxious about clothing, but he does like to look "geeky cool".

He has started High School this week. I seem to be incapable of taking a decent picture in the morning, but here he is, on his second day of HS. The molecular thingy on his Tshirt is caffeine - fitting, somehow, for my coffee-drinking teen.

He's maturing so quickly now. He cooks, he actually spent time cleaning his room yesterday (after I threatened to ground him from all activities, though), and he's been so helpful all year while I've been recovering. I feel so blessed to have him.


Netter said...

Very poignant post. We do mark time with the school year - I don't want to think about how we'll mark it when they're done in a couple years.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings about your son's momentous time!

read2akid said...

Those are some mad skillz with that curling iron! Very brave for posting your pics, too. I cannot believe our kids are starting HS this year! Time passes too fast.

Cheryl said...

I have always felt the same way about the fall. What an exciting (scary) feeling that was starting up school each year. I see it as a start to the "year" too and then get a do-over come January ;)

LynneF said...

Wonderful post!! I will always feel a sense of renewal in the fall when the school year starts. I did during the many years between my own schooling and my daughters' so I think I always will even after they too are done. Maybe it also ties in to my Fall birthday, but Fall is definitely my favorite season and new school supplies were definitely on the list of reasons.

knittingbrow said...

Thanks for posting.
Thanks for making me think about all this deep stuff.
ugh. I guess I should make time for that sort of thinking, right?