Monday, December 22, 2014

Contemplating this special season of celebration I wanted to share a poem that has meant so much to me and in many ways defines why I am a School Counselor.  This poem, which many of you may already know, is called  A Prayer for Children  and was written in the 90's by columnist Ina J. Hughes for the Knoxville News-Sentinel.
Thank you for all you do for all the children.  Never underestimate how your caring words and the time you spend may impact their young lives.  I pray this poem touches your heart as it has touched mine.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukka, and Happy Kwanzaa! Many blessings on you and yours as you celebrate with those you love.

A Prayer for  Children by Ina J. Hughes

We pray for children
who give us sticky kisses,
who hop rocks and chase butterflies,
who stomp in puddles and ruin their new pants,
who sneak Popsicles before supper,
who erase holes in math workbooks,
who can never find their shoes.
And we pray for those
who stare at photographers from behind barbed wire,
who’ve never squeaked across the floor in new sneakers,
who never "counted potatoes",
who are born in places we wouldn’t be caught dead,
who never go to the circus,
who live in an X-rated world.
We pray for children
who bring us fistfuls of dandelions and sing-off key,
who have goldfish funerals, build card-table forts,
who slurp their cereal on purpose,
who get gum in their hair, put sugar in their milk
who spit toothpaste all over the sink,
who hug us for no reason, who bless us each night,
And we pray for those
who never get dessert,
who watch their parents watch them die,
who have no safe blanket to drag behind,
who can’t find any bread to steal,
who don’t have any rooms to clean up,
whose pictures aren’t on anybody’s dresser,
whose monsters are real.
We pray for children
who spend all their allowance before Tuesday,
who throw tantrums in the grocery store
and pick at their food,
who like ghost stories,
who shove dirty clothes under the bed,
who never rinse out the tub,
who get quarters from the tooth fairy,
who don't like to be kissed in front of the car pool,
who squirm in church and scream in the phone,
whose tears we sometimes laugh at
and whose smiles can make us cry.
And we pray for those
whose nightmares come in the daytime,
who will eat anything,
who have never seen a dentist,
who aren't spoiled by anybody,
who go to bed hungry and cry themselves to sleep,
who live and move, but have no being.
We pray for children
who want to be carried,
and for those who must.
For those we never give up on,
and for those who don't have a chance.
For those we smother,
and for those who will grab the hand of anybody
kind enough to offer.


  1. Thank you for sharing! I must share this at our next Counselors' meeting! Merry Christmas to you!

    1. Your are welcome! This was first shared with me at one of my earliest Counselor meetings and has always stayed with me. I know you will be sure to give credit to the fabulous Ms.Ina Hughes for her inspiring poem.
      Merry Christmas to you and yours!