May 29, 2012

Summer Detention

I walked down the hall this morning to the voices of little children chattering in their rooms. Their discussion caught my ear and I wavered, just outside closed doors, to listen. What I heard made my fingers start to tremble, my eyes roll back in my head and a thousand car alarms start automatically disarming in the neighborhood.


I remember, as a child, jumping for the joy the day those school bells rang. Racing past the teachers who had no authority to tell me to slow down anymore, getting down on my knees to give thanks for not having to ride in that stinky yellow school bus for a good three months. No longer was I a first grader, second grader, third grader, etc. . . I was moving up in the world. Better yet, my whole life lay in front of me, waiting for me to sieze the day! Days of swimming at the pool, bike riding, playing with friends, sleepovers, fishing, playing at the park, staying up till midnight, roasting marshmallows, going to visit my grandparents, eating strawberries and ice cream, itching huge mosquito bites until they bled, catching fireflies, chasing toads (this still held true until my college days - the toad just became more of a metaphor), watching fireworks, eating BBQ. . .  I loved summer.

I loved summer until I became the mother of school-aged kids.

Now I begin to dread those long summer months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, seconds. You get the idea.
Instead of having school and homework to keep them occupied, I become promoted to the Director of Activities. A thankless job that sends our gasoline fund into the depths of despair.

The Boys:  "Mom, I have a baseball game today. It's way across town. I need to be there at exactly the same time the little kids should be napping. Plus I told Tommy we'd pick him up on our way. You can do that, right?"

The Girls:  "Mom, I don't fit into my swimsuit from last year. Or any of my shorts, shirts, shoes, socks, underwear or hair ribbons. We need to go shopping right now, because I have swimming lessons today. At exactly the same time the boys have baseball. You can get me there, right?"

The Dog:  "You haven't fed me since Christmas. The only sustinence I recieve on a daily basis comes from the food the babies drop and the toilet bowl. Please start grilling more. I'm tired of casseroles."

The Little Babies:   "I'm hungry! I'm tired! I'm hungry! I'm bored! I want out of this car seat! Where's the ice cream?! I said, I WANT SOME ICE CREAM!"

Ahhhh. . .    I love summer. Don't you?