I’m sitting here, reading all of the social media posts from parents (including my sister) who have been choking back tears, watching their little ones begin their first day of school.
Forgive me, people, but I’m cracking up over here. Why? Because I know that in 7 or 8 years, these same parents be watching the calendar all summer long, praying for the day when they can kick these little monsters out of the house.
But hey, I understand. That first time is special. When you consider that this child has been home with mom (and dad) since birth – learning to speak, spell, add, walk, tie their own shoes and hopefully go to the bathroom when the time comes. It’s hard to let go of your baby.
We literally mold the clay that is to become the student, the teen, and eventually the adult that will someday choose the retirement home that they send us off to. Ain’t that comforting? But don’t worry about that. For now, we mourn the loss of the little tike that we’ve been so eager to see enter his first days of formal education while learning to function among a host of strangers their own age.
If we’re lucky, we’ll live in the same city for the duration of their school years, so they can go back their senior year to take another picture with their kindergarten teacher, 12 years later. My two youngest were able to do that.
Sadly, my job and relocation have made that impossible for the first two.
Another thing I find funny is that those who are returning to school have been healthy, all summer long. They’re the first ones up in the morning to get on their video games (my generation went outside) and the last to go to sleep at night.
Think about that every time they whine about being too sick to go to school as the year progresses. But while we’re on the subject, that’s one thing I will never miss. I can’t tell you how angry I used to get, yearly, when my kids brought home the latest and greatest flu virus, causing me to spend a week or two on my death bed. Believe it or not, since my youngest graduated from high school in 2018, I haven’t been sick with the flu ONCE! NOT A SINGLE TIME! Twenty-five consecutive years with the flu between four boys and then nothing. Nada. Zip.
- I don’t miss the purchasing of school supplies.
- I don’t miss having to take them to school because they missed their bus.
- I don’t miss the calls to pick them UP from school because they missed their bus.
- I don’t miss the last-minute, “due tomorrow” requests to put together a school project, when they’ve known about it for two months, causing me to run to Wal-Mart for cardboard and props.
- I don’t miss the Parent-Teacher conferences where I learn that one of my boys was dancing on his desk.
- I don’t miss Snow Day (unless it was a Level 3 emergency, forcing me to stay home as well).
But I DO miss my boys being boys. I miss talking about school at dinner time. And I miss seeing them in the school choir. And I miss having 300 kids over for a sleepover.
And it REALLY pays off on that final day…
Some bad. A lot, good.
I guess it all comes out in the wash…
…as long as we’re not talking about school clothes.
Enjoy this time, my friends. It’s one of the most beautiful experiences you’ll ever know.
School is back in session.
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