Tender Strength

Spring is near.

I stopped to notice.

The birds have found their song again. Walking in the morning there is silence no more. The birds welcome the light and with that a sense of gratitude for the day wells up.

I stopped to notice.

The snow drops have bloomed in the meadow. The first sign that the earth is warming to the thought of spring. The new is emerging bringing with it the fresh start of a new season.

I stopped to notice.

The daffodil bulbs are starting to emerge. Their emerald green pushes up through the callous, hard earth. They signal the shift from winter to spring.

I stopped to think.

What tender strength is found in the emergence of spring. Things that are so delicate, yet have the tenacity to survive the cold nights. Things so gentle, yet full of toughness. I think that gentle strength is a trait most educators identify with. We have such concern and love for our students, yet must maintain the strength and stability it takes to run a classroom with many diverse needs. We have a soft spot for every story our students share, yet with perseverance we guide them to rise above it.

I stopped to notice; I stopped to think. I find myself doing that much more these days. One of the benefits of getting older, I guess. Having the time to hit pause and think, wonder, reflect.

Tender strength

11 thoughts on “Tender Strength

  1. You have captured, in one blessed post, so many of my recent thoughts. I love the structure you chose. It matches the cadence of what you are saying. I read each stanza, I paused to notice, to think, to be impressed. Your students are fortunate to have a teacher with such wide open eyes and heart!

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  2. Jill, you have written this with such delicacy in your details, and then the repetitiveness of I stopped to notice is what gives it strength. My favorite lines: “What tender strength is found in the emergence of spring. Things that are so delicate, yet have the tenacity to survive the cold nights.” Another beautiful post! Now if spring would just get here!

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  3. The way you wrote this reminded me of some of my favorite writers in the Ideals magazines. Most seasons are a time of reflection but to me Spring is the one I pause and reflect the most. Could it be because we’re coming out of the dreary and dark winter? Possibly. Could it be because of the symphony of chirps and whistles from the birds? Maybe. Or maybe it’s because like the season itself we’re feeling a sense of renewal and for that we are grateful.

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  4. I love this! I often wonder if I stop to notice more because I am getting older also. Life has slowed down a bit. I have two kids, 11 and 9. I know they are still young and still need a lot, but a lot of those “last” moments have passed. I know the years fly by, I know I won’t remember every moment, so I need to stop to notice them now.

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  5. Your repetition as you notice and think about the signs of spring – what you see and hear – is crystal clear in your descriptions. Great example of show not tell!

    But this is my favorite when you said “how” it occurred:

    “I stopped to notice; I stopped to think. I find myself doing that much more these days. One of the benefits of getting older, I guess. Having the time to hit pause and think, wonder, reflect.”

    Liked by 1 person

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