It’s back-to-school already! My girls start back to school in a couple days and I am decidedly simultaneously ecstatic and sad about back-to-school. Last year, my baby entered kindergarten and while trepedatious I was completely ecstatic to have the day to myself for the first time in 7 years. Then on the first day of school, I was promptly grief stricken. Alone. Crying because I was alone. What the hell was wrong with me? My baby was gaining independence at lightening speed and her childhood was a runaway train. Stop.that.train!
I should have been dancing around the house in my undies, playing air guitar and celebrating my hard earned freedom. Instead, I sat on my couch looking out the window sobbing at my computer, counting the minutes until my babies were back in my arms; the very place from which I was pushing them out the door that morning. The duplicitous of motherhood; it’s enough to make you crazy.
This year is different. I know they are both going to school. I know they both love it and I know their teachers. There is nothing scary about this year. Only the summer went by way too fast and now, I am regretting all the lost moments that I should have spent enjoying my children instead of swatting them away and shooing them into another room so that I could complete my work. It sucked. I sucked and I have the guilt to prove it.
This summer did serve one purpose though, it has taught me to appreciate the moments and to know that next summer, work will have to wait. My girls will always come first. You know the nature of my business is to be a mommy. I write about being a mom in all of it’s many facets. So, when I am doing a shitty job of it; being a mom, not writing about being a mom, it makes me feel like a fraud because in the end, I want to be great mom not a great writer writing about being a mom. So, this summer has taught me some things. The most important being that childhood is fleeting and the older my girls get, the faster the summers go.
It’s like life is this crazy carnival ride we are on together and it just keeps speeding up. It goes by so fast some times that I feel like I just might get sick. Wasn’t it just year that my daughters were born? Wasn’t it just a few months ago that they learned to talk and walk and say “ I Love you”? Where did the time go?
My oldest is 8 and almost as tall as I am. She is becoming such a beautiful and amazing young lady; full of personality and wit. She’s thoughtful and caring and I see sincerity and loyalty in her eyes. Her thoughts and opinions are no longer something I told her, she is forming her own beliefs. I can still see the cherubesque little face I once held in my arms as she looked up at me like I was her everything but it is evolving into the woman she will someday be and it will be here before you know it.
My 6-year-old is funny, silly, beautiful and charming. Her passion and fierce convictions about life teeter on scaring me at times. She has been and will always be an ask permission later kind of child. She’s still small enough to cuddle up into my lap and she loves to cuddle with me at night. I should be forcing her to sleep in her bed alone but, my God, in no time she will not need or want me to cuddle her to sleep. So, I take it all in sucking every bit of marrow out of their childhood. I want to linger awhile and watch them sleep, listen to them speak and truly hear what they are saying.
School starts back on Wednesday and I am going to make today and tomorrow count because once these last days of summer vacation are gone, they are gone forever. Moments in life cannot be DVRed and rewound, they have to be lived while they are happening or they are lost forever. Stop. This. Train. I want to get off.
What are you going to miss the most when your children go back to school?