This was the year that my son was supposed to start kindergarten and then the coronavirus slammed into the globe and all of the ideas we had in our heads about how this first year of our son's formal education would look were smashed.

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My husband and I made the difficult decision not to send our son to in-school class, instead opting to juggle our full-time jobs while educating our son full-time at home. We figured if we were going to teach at home that we might as well jump in with both feet and become full-fledged homeschooling parents. My husband and I work opposite work schedules which allows us to take turns teaching our son. Mom and dad are exhausted, tapped out, and borderline emotionally drained, but we keep soldiering on because our child is thriving in ways we could have only dreamed of and really, that's the most important thing to us.

My heart hurts for the parents who feel like they're failing their kids and for the educators who go into our school buildings and then home to their families, not knowing what they might be carrying on them. And our sweet babies. How heavy my heart is for them. I know how resilient kids are, but school shouldn't look like this. Our kids are wearing masks and sitting behind plastic dividers. They're not high-fiving or running to embrace their friends in hugs. They're not swapping the contents of their lunch boxes or even sitting next to each other at lunch.

These photos made me cry, but it was so important to me to share them with you. Looking at these, I was reminded that globally, as parents and as educators, we are way more united than we are divided. Our political leanings, religious affiliations, even our social and economic statuses mean nothing when it comes to the desire in our hearts to want to keep our kids healthy while making sure that they get the education they deserve.