Sometimes it feels like we’ve got it all in control, a new school, a new schedule, a return back to work obligations. We can set the alarm early, burn the midnight oil, pack the school lunch ahead of time, rise up and meet the challenge. Sometimes it all works and everyone thrives.

Sometimes, no.

Sometimes it is simply miserable to leave our children behind and trudge off to work.

Miserable.

It doesn’t mean we don’t care about our jobs or that we lack compassion, or a passion, intent, or drive to serve. It really can mean that we just love our children.

A recent drop-off at school reminded me. I’d woken up early to prepare lunch, get F up for carpool pick-up ,and ready myself for work. But something about the start didn’t feel right. A little twinge in my heart had me muttering, “Sometimes you just wake up feeling sad.” I was missing the boys before they were gone.

I puttered around the kitchen, soaked up the boys at breakfast, and did my best to prop my chin up. It was my turn to drop off O, our 3 year-old, at school. He skipped in the front door, headed straight to the cubby to pop off his shoes, and I signed him in. Just then, the bomb dropped.

As if he could sense my hesitation about the day, he literally death-gripped my legs and looked up,

  Pleeeeeeeeaase don’t leave me here, Mommy.

That was all it took. He sobbed, I sobbed. Miserable mess–we’ve been doing this for years –why the salt in my wound today? At minute mark 3 or 4, I realized I was doing no one any good sticking around. I offered up a Kissing Hand, then asked (and was rejected by him) for one in return, and headed off to the car. The day unfolded as one of those days where the ceiling just seems a bit lower.

Sometimes, it’s miserable to separate from our children. Separation anxiety may be my diagnosis, too. But thank goodness it fills the reuniting with magic.