We are going on a vacation, and I am writing this three weeks in advance of publication. I wrote it on July 10, and when I saved this article as 8-3-16, I thought, “oh no, it’s August.”
The county fair is coming and then school starts. The realization almost gave me a headache and I don’t even have little kids at home.
As a grandma, I have empathy for my adult children who are raising toddlers and teenagers. Their life is about to shift from carefree sun and fun to house bound activities, morning alarms, and homework.
I have to admit though, when I was raising kids on the farm and the school bus rolled into the yard the first day of school, I was thrilled. Life could get back to some semblance of order and routine. I would have time, a precious, limited commodity. When kids are small and under-foot all day, or active in school, time is priceless.
I knew I would have time to refinish furniture I bought at farm sales, clean up remaining garden produce uninterrupted, make cookies, and anxiously await the bus returning up the lane.
I truly loved when school started.
A neighbor once told us, on a snow-day morning, everyone at his house was happy about not having school, except his wife. I admit, I was with her.
I have a life now where summer never ends, and I miss the change of activities and responsibilities. I miss the purpose returning to the household and the conjured up projects. I also miss being a room-mother and sitting on bleachers hours and hours each week. I miss my larger circle of friends who had common struggles and rewards.
To all parents, as you look school in the eye and say goodbye to swimming and bike rides, say hello to another year of learning and digging deep to find the wisdom of loving and teaching. I admire you all so much. You have in your hands the hope of our future.
My advice, don’t worry about new school clothes until Christmas, have the same bedtime as your kids, and begin writing in a journal to record your daily joys and frustrations.
I give my personal permission and encouragement for you to take care of yourself. Parents matter too!
Until the next time: Live while you live!
(Jennifer Goble, Ph.D., LPC, is the author of My Clients…My Teachers, and the blogger and encourager of Rural Women Stories: www.ruralwomenstories.com.)
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