Hey, mommy celebrating your kids’ return to school: Don’t feel bad for me. True, my children are not going to school all day, giving me what I can only imagine is the most amazing break in the world. But I still love back-to-school time.
Actually, I friggin’ ADORE it.
I look forward to every August because I know it’s time for all those kids to get off my lawn and get into a desk chair. Look, your kids are wonderful. They are brilliant. They totally live up to every Facebook brag I have seen you post. But praise god, they are nowhere in sight when back-to-school comes.
See, as a mother with young kids, I go stir-crazy in my house. My kids are up by 5:30 a.m. most mornings, which means I need to fill a substantial amount of time with activities to keep all three of us happy. Now that your kids are picking their noses in a classroom somewhere, my kids can do things like run around a park that is almost empty.
Did you hear what I said? AN ALMOST-EMPTY PARK!
An almost-empty park is an outstanding sight for my squinting, danger-assessing eyes. I don’t have to worry about older kids roughing up my daughter as she takes her time climbing the steps to the slide. I don’t need to worry that my son will latch on to a group of boys much older than him and then witness his heartbreak when he realizes they have no interest in playing with him.
It’s not just the park. The library, the gym, the grocery store, the play area at Chick-FIL-A (yes, we totally go there); they are all devoid of your children’s smiling faces, and it’s absolutely beautiful.
Oh, and the shopping. Thank you for the back-to-school shopping. See, they don’t ask you at the register if you have a kid going back to school. Nope, they just let you cash in on the savings because back-to-school is a damn holiday. This is a time to celebrate by maxing out my charge card at Kohl’s and hitting up the art store to restock our supplies for
coloring on the walls craft time.
I love this time of year so much that I can even see past the school bus traffic that makes my daily trip to the gym take about five minutes longer. I used to get so annoyed getting trapped behind those giant, yellow monsters, but now I’m like, “School bus! Life is better! Let’s go see what’s on sale at Target because no one will be there and we will have the aisles to ourselves!”
Truth time: I simultaneously look forward to and rue the day both my children are in school. I’ll be able to work more, have the house to myself and re-learn algebra right alongside them. On the flip side, I’ll also miss their sweet little faces, and I’m sure my home will seem eerily quiet.
Fortunately, I still get to enjoy a few more back-to-school holidays before that happens. So please, don’t pity me for not being able to ship my kids off to a brick building just yet. I’m having a blast.