Friday, March 22, 2019

Slice of Life Story Challenge #22 - The Day You Begin

 My focus this month is to explore writing invitations, mostly through newly published picture books, but possibly some other mentor texts as well.

The Day You BeginThe Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

bookshelves: 2018-bookbebravebeginning-of-schoolcharacter-developmentconflict-and-resolutionconnectionscouragediversity,fearandcouragefriendshipimmigrationimmigrantsidentity,invitation-for-writingpicture-bookrepetitioninclusiveness 

Beautiful celebration of belonging, inclusiveness, and courage. "There will be times...." repeats through the book as various kids try to find a way to connect. Of course, we've all had those times when we felt different, isolated, and fearful. Sometimes all it takes is one person to reach out and connect. Great story for writing inspiration, building community, and making sure we appreciate each other's differences through reaching out.

View all my reviews

Who hasn't felt all alone sometimes?  On the outside looking in? 

The Day You Begin

There will be times when the city you grew up in
is in your rear view mirror,
a family sized bag of M&Ms
in your drink holder to console you.

There will be times when you start a new job
and you are once again unsure of yourself,
wondering if you did the right thing.

Does she know what she's doing?
I wonder if she belongs here.
Maybe you'll be one of us someday.

There will be times when you enter a room
and no one seems to look your way,
or invites you to join them
and you feel completely alone.

But if you take a good look
inside yourself,
you'll know you've been here before,
and most likely will be again.

And you'll know you're strong enough,
and that you will make it through.
You'll grow in this experience
and will once again feel the connections
you felt before.

This is the day you begin

to make friends in your new neighborhood,
and make a home in a new place,
to find your confidence
and realize you're right where you belong,

where the room embraces you
and your path appears before you
and you'll say,
well, hello...
there you are!


  1. Love the inspiration from picture books. Your poem resonates greatly with me as I prepare to relocate. I have done this once before. Instead of M&M's, it was a bag of Twizzlers. I had to break up with Twizzlers, which inspired a poem. Thank you for this post.

  2. Oh, this is so lovely, Holly! I love this book and how you've made it apply to your life. The opening reminded me of the song "Wide Open Spaces" by the Dixie Chicks.

  3. I like how you moved from a book review to poetry to share your inner feelings. It seems that Sarah and Angela feel the same way. The poem reminds me of your recent move. Perhaps, this is what you meant to do. The lines that stand out to me are the first three of the last stanza. I found it interesting that the word again stands alone showing its importance. Very nicely done, Holly.