As soon as August rolls around I get a knot in my stomach. August means school. School means shopping, and not shopping for fun stuff, shopping for school supplies and school clothes. Shopping means making sure our kids have everything they need to start the school year off right. School shopping means school is starting soon. That means we will be busy and on a schedule. That means mornings will be used for rushing around packing lunches, packing backpacks and getting the kids out the door. And busy mornings will turn into busy nights filled with homework, practices and games.
August also means the end of summer, and the end of summer means winter. Winters are long in Western PA, And when school starts, I know winter isn’t far behind. I love summer, so August is a bummer.
But to be honest when the craziness of the school year begins one of the things I really miss the most is all of the one on one quality time I get to spend with my son. I know many mom’s rejoice at the start of the school year because it finally means a day without interruption or a house that stays clean longer than five minutes — I’m not one of those moms.
Ever since my son was born I always referred to him as my constant companion. In the summer I have a workout buddy, and someone to fun and sun with. This summer we started a morning run almost everyday. Those runs did more than help us get in shape, they allowed us to have in-depth, deep conversations about whatever he is into at the time. We talk about anything from dinosaurs to what he wants to do for a living when he grows up. He started out the summer wanting to be a guinea pig farmer and as of today he wants to be a geneticist . In the summer I can throw my traditional chores, such as doing the laundry and cleaning, out the window because my focus is more on my son, bonding with him and making sure he has fun.
Now don’t get me wrong he’s not with me everyday 24 hrs a day. He has friends and they come over and fill my house with laughter. He comes in the house at night tired from playing until he just can’t play anymore.
Like I said, when August begins I always start to feel anxious. And I have to admit, I begin counting down the days we have left together, trying to squeeze in those last few days of fun. No matter how hard I try to push it away, the first day of school always shows up. He’s off to school.
My days become quiet, I miss the noise in the house. Days now begin to fill up my mommy duties. Cleaning house, doing laundry and running errands.
During the week he comes home from school, we spend time chatting and I ask him about his day. But before I know it, it’s time for homework, a lesson or a practice of some sort. Bed time quickly approaches and the next day we get up and do it all over again. Weekends are less active than summer days. Especially when it’s cold and the ground is covered in snow.
We all adjust to our new schedules and for the next nine months we continue to count down the day until summer arrives again.
Once May rolls in I begin to feel the excitement of summer start to bloom. That last day of school takes forever to come. It comes and we celebrate the beginning of summer.
I know he’s not going to want to hang with mom much longer. He’s growing up and is such and amazing, kind hearted little man.
My relationship with my son has taught me a few very important lessons. I have learned to enjoy and be present in the moments that truly matter. Children are such a blessing. And time with them is extremely precious.
I know your kids may have driven you crazy this summer and maybe you’re ready to send them back to school, but remember to take in these last couple weeks of summer. Fill them with something fun. Allow yourself to let your guard down and make memories you and your children will remember forever.
As for me, I’m going to swallow the lump in my throat, I’m going to smile through August, probably cry the first day back to school, and I’m going to be thankful for the memories I made with my son this summer.
And start counting down the days until next summer.