I am feeling the prayers and I appreciate every single one of them. I decided last night, after an emotional day, that I’m not ready to make the next step. I’ve decided that going back to work moves me into a space that I’m not ready for. I’m not ready to start new routines without my girls; I’m not ready to move on. So, I’m going to spend a couple of weeks being still and I will intentionally listen. Listen to what God has planned for me and for my family. I know that one day I will wake up and say “today is the day I go to work”, and I will go;today is not that day. Once again I feel the prayers of those near and far and I am so thankful.

I do miss my students. I walked into a school yesterday and one of my kiddos ran over to me and said, “Teacher Susan I have not seen you in such a long time, I miss you.” Fighting back tears I gave him a giant hug. My students are going to be fine and are in really good hands. I do miss them though but I know when it’s time to go back we will pick up right where we left off; playing in the gym, jumping rope, yoga poses and lots of high fives. They will also give me hugs and I will take every one of those hugs and know that I am blessed to have each and every one of them in my life.

While I was at Dilley yesterday I popped my head into Anna’s class. Her friends are so amazing and I love that when I walk in the room they all say with excitement, “It’s Anna’s mom!” Anna’s teacher, Mrs. Wilson, has created such a loving space for her friends. I brought in a teddy bear that is all decked out in one of Anna’s favorite Hello Kitty t-shirts and it sits in her cubby. With the bear is Anna’s school picture in a little frame. Mrs. Wilson has created this space for kids to connect with Anna if they want. I can usually find a couple of notes and drawings tucked in from students. I love that they continue to write her notes. I love that when I’m in that room I feel Anna. She loved being at Dilley and loved her classmates.

Both my girls had so many friends. I worry about them and I pray daily for their little hearts that are broken. I want to forever connect with these kids and be present in their lives. In doing so I will see my girls grow up. There will be so much that I miss, but if I watch Grace dance in her recital I will see Abigail dancing next to her. If I see McKenna swinging at recess I will see Anna swinging next to her. If I go to Girl Scout meetings I will hear Abigail’s voice in all the wonderful things they plan to do for other people. If I go to Rowan and Reese’s birthday parties I will hear Anna sing Happy Birthday to her friends.  If I hear Paige laugh I will hear Abigail laugh. If I play lava monster with Jacob and Michael I will see both my girls running away trying not to be tagged. I can go on and on listing the countless friends and experiences I want to have with them.

I wish my time wasn’t cut short. I wish I didn’t have to use my imagination.

I will say though that I feel my girls daily and I hear and feel God’s love. So here I sit, writing, and this afternoon I’m going to rock out to Taylor Swift because that is what feels right.




14 thoughts on “Listening

  1. I miss seeing your face and work and will greet you with lots of love when you return. I’m proud of you for listening and doing what’s right for you. We’ve all got your back and your students are being loved on daily! You just take care of you.


  2. Thank you Susan for including Paige. You are very thoughtful and loving, always considerate of other peoples feelings. I wish I could take away your pain. Love you always. Forever friends.


    1. Paige was Abigail’s BFF…that will always be the case. No matter what, Abigail always knew that she had you all on her side. We can’t thank you enough for that Cindy!


  3. Susan, I thought about you all day yesterday as you took that step and I prayed for you. I am proud of you for knowing your limits and allowing yourself the time and self-care you need. I hope that comes across as I intend it, in a supportive way. You have amazed, inspired and helped heal us all with your actions, honesty and vulnerability. I am so glad you are continuing to listen as He walks with you in this journey. Thank you so much for sharing. I continue to pray for you, Tom and your family each each morning first thing and then check in with your posts to see how you are and read whatever beautiful memory you share with us all. I love you my friend and I know that my own relationship with our Heavenly Father grows each day through you. Prayers, hugs and love to you both! Xoxo


  4. We look forward to your help raising our girls. They will have a 2nd mom to turn to, when those sassy teenage horns appear! We know they will turn to you and say “My mom just doesn’t get me!” I take comfort knowing you will be there to steer them. We love you and Tom.


  5. I am praying for you. I’m so glad you are hearing God and taking time. I pray constantly that He continues to soothe your heart moment by moment. Your blog Is helping us all heal. Thank you for your honest sharing. Love you!


  6. Good for you for giving it a go today. And good for you for feeling your limits and respecting them. In my mind, that is a sign of impressive strength.

    It sounds like there were many wonderful details about today that will come back to you to help when you are ready to prepare for your second day back — whenever that day might be. These details touched my heart and reminded me of just how special this school district can be. It will be waiting for you as long as you need.


  7. Oh Susan, I can sense how difficult the day was in your words. Tears roll down my face as the grim reality sets in, over and over again. My words won’t be helpful today. I want to scream from the top of the world that it’s not right. It’s not right. I feel your pain today. Creating strong bonds with Abigail and Anna’s friends and sharing moments with them as the girls would have will hopefully provide much needed peace as the days turn in to years. You are brilliantly strong to recognize your own limits and to know more healing is necessary. And I hope you know, that as you create routines, you’re not ‘moving on’, you’re not choosing to move past this time in your life as the girls will always be with you. Just because you are missing a step or 3 in the morning, doesn’t mean you’re choosing a different life, it means you’re incorporating them in a new way. I love you so very much and wish I could take you out for a coffee today. xoxo


  8. I am filled with so much grief, inspiration and hope for you all in my heart.
    You are Amazing and You are Strong.


  9. I am glad you are following your heart about work. Work will be there when you are ready. I am so near if you ever need me. I am almost always home and would be glad to come around the corner to pray with you, listen or just go for a walk together. I’d be glad to fill any need. You know you can message me anytime, day or night. Praying without ceasing….all day, every day for you to feel comfort.


  10. Susan, you are so smart to go back to work on your own timeline. Your situation is so unique in that your work life and life with children, and your children, are so intertwined. Keep listening and practicing self-care my friend! In the meantime, I appreciate what you wrote about seeing your girls growing up in her friends — know their successes will include her, and know that we will continue to invite you to family celebrations. You are loved!!!


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