The summer barrels toward its conclusion and the school years pulls us into its beginning.

I meet with a lot of adolescents who are preparing to transition to middle and high school, and other families whose loved ones are starting in a new school or a new vocational opportunity. I walk with caregivers as they doubt and deliberate over services and supports for their child. As many folks wonder and worry about the start of new routines, what we need are relationships.

Of all these, friends feel most important to me

The years roll by and the marks on the door frame grows higher reminding us of how time passes. But the glue that binds and holds the fissures tight are the relationships we forge with peers.

You are lovable and waiting to be loved

I wish more people knew this and felt this often enough to hear it in their heart from memory. All the quirks and intense interests are tinder for a burning flame of future connection. I wish I could cast a spell that lasted for years convincing children that what they like is really cool.

And that someone else will believe that, too

Common interests and shared time together in the same physical space; those ingredients are ones we all have in stock and can share with others. I wish you the confidence to share freely.

Your insects and your weather

Your Legos and your welding

Your astrology and your fairies

Your gems and your writing

Your coding and Your projects

They wait to be held dearly by another

Your joy is a gift to others

As summer sets and autumn wafts in through the cracked windows, I hope you meet someone this fall that prizes you and holds you as dearly as the ones who already love you do.