Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Back to School

Today is a milestone of a day for me. All my children are in school all day. At several points during the past 16 years I thought I'd never reach this lovely day. Now it has come all to quickly and my life is going to require some readjusting. Afrer I do some serious celebrating today, of course.

I don't know about other Moms, but I am offended with the back to school comsumer onslaught on the 5th of July. I am horrified that I am being accosted with back to school junk right after the 4th. That's because we've only been out of school about five weeks and we're all still having fun. We all still like each other. How dare these stores ruin my summer by making me think about clothes, backpacks and pencils?

Then comes the first week in August when I start thinking that maybe it would be OK for the kids to go back to school. I'm not desperate or even anxious at that point. By the second week in August I start asking Darren, "Have our kids always been so incredibly annoying?" I still don't want to buy anything, but I've managed to reluctantly pick up some socks, underwear and maybe some Zip-loc bags for lunches. Oh yeah, I did buy some shoes for the kids, too, but only because I stumbled upon a great deal, not because I wanted to.

By now it is the third week in August and I don't know why I ever had kids. Their irritable but tolerable squirks have now turned into major personality flaws that make me wonder how they will ever evolve into functional , well-adjusted adults. OK, this is a bit harsh and exaggerated!

Now it's the day before school. We go to back to school night to meet the teachers and get school supply lists. Then we head to Staples with the rest of the valley to buy school supplies we've been putting off. While cruising up and down the aisles there, trying to dodge other procrastinators, I can't stop thinking of a neighbor's comment at back to school night.

She said, "Wow that was the fastest summer ever!" I agreed with her. Then she said, "I'm just not ready for this back to school stuff. I wish all my kids could be home with me all the time all year long!" (She has seven children.)

I didn't know how to react to this. I think I just smiled because I was just astounded that such a mother existed. She must be some sort of rare species. As for me, I'm going to love every minute of my six hours of peace.

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