Read the Full June 2022 Newsletter Here.
I have been thinking about writing the June 2022 newsletter for six years The year I opened the store, I had just sent my eldest off to start college, and my twins were in seventh grade. I was not confident about opening a new business with kids at home that still needed a lot of my time, and even considered waiting to open it until they were gone, or at least driving. No doubt,it would have been easier, as I spent six years worrying about all the things I was missing with them when I was at the store, and worrying about all the things I was missing at the store when I was with them. That’s the anguish of every working parent though, we just can’t be in two places at once.
But my kids surprised me, as kids usually do. The missed baseball and football games, the missed horse shows and carpools and field trips, all those Decembers when I couldn't even get home for dinner, ultimately didn't really matter. They were incredibly supportive, proud of the store, helped out when they could, and encouraged me to work when I needed to. They forgave every single time I wasn't there, and appreciated every single time I was. Roundabout is here now because of their genuine understanding and support. And as they graduate this month, and I face that empty nest transition when I’ll have much more time for the shop, though missing the bustle of children at home, I can only feel grateful for every single memory of the last six years, the good and the bad. Thank you Arwen and Jack, we made it through, and I’m so very proud of both of you.
Every graduation season feels significant. Maybe it’s the former teacher in me, but this moment is such a transition, a milestone, and a mountain of possibility all tangled up together in one big emotional right of passage. If you’re the parent of a graduate this year… Congratulations. Somehow we managed to get here, through all the ups and downs of toddlerhood and teenagerhood, it's done. If you’re a parent of kids still on this journey – I promise, you will make it here too. Even if this is the weekend you find empty liquor bottles underneath your teenagers bed and realize they have several missing assignments two weeks before the end of a school year (been there!). We're grateful for all the moments.
And if you know a parent of a child who will not see their graduation day… I just have not been able to find the words. In 2030, 19 children from Uvalde will not graduate. Last year, The Lost Class shared a message that 3,044 children did not graduate because of gun violence. On this day, when we celebrate all the former achievements and future possibilities, our hearts are heavy, and we mourn for those that will never see their graduation day. Sometimes it feels like the only thing we can do is scream into the void and cry in despair, as nothing seems to be changing. But we can still call our elected officials, have difficult conversations with each other, and vote for policies that will stop this madness. We need schools to be safe, so teachers keep teaching, and children keep learning, and they all keep breathing. Somehow, we have to figure out how to do more than mourn the losses, we have to find the path to change.
Friday, June 3, is National Gun Violence Awareness Day. Penguin Publishing Group and PRH are partnering again with Everytown for Gun Safety in support of #WearOrange weekend, to help raise awareness and send a powerful message to end gun violence. PRH has updated its National Gun Violence Awareness Day Book List, is working to get bookstores and authors involved, and encouraging authors to sign up for the Everytown Authors Council, a group designed to harness the power of the literary community to amplify the gun safety movement.
There’s so much more to talk about for June, but I think this is enough for today’s letter. Please read below for all the exciting events coming up at Roundabout this month. To all the graduates out there... celebrate this moment, you've earned it. Then go out there and raise your voice, make your mark, find the path toward the change you want to see in the world. We've got your back.
*Reading List Below
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When Thoughts and Prayers Aren't Enough: A Shooting Survivor's Journey Into the Realities of Gun Violence (Hardcover)
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