Menifee Mom: Start of School Brings Mixed Emotions

By Karen Thomas

It is hard to believe that the time has already come for the kids to head back to school.

Just as we are starting to get into the summer groove, it's over. In my day, we had a much longer summer break and a lot more time to get bored. Whether a longer break is good or bad is a matter of debate, but I just know that this time of year brings mixed feelings.

At the end of the school year, it seems that as moms, we always have grand plans for all that we are going to accomplish over the summer. For some reason, we imagine that things will slow down and there will be more time to focus on the things we didn't have time for during school. (I think somehow we are dreaming that the grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, and laundry is going to magically disappear!)

The irony is that when back to school time rolls around, we find ourselves feeling the same way. I know that I am already imagining all that I will get done when the kids are back in school all day!

But really, who am I kidding? Back to school means back to getting the kids up at 6:15 a.m., back to making lunches while I'm half asleep, back to hours of homework, back to school pick-up and drop-off chaos, back to volunteering, back to soccer, and basically back to days and weeks that are determined not by me, but largely by my kids.

So this week was spent trying to "live it up" for the last few days. Maybe, like us, you have managed to squeeze in one last trip to the beach or an amusement park. Most likely you've run around town, with kids in tow, trying to buy those last few things the kids "need" before school starts. (And you'll soon do it again when you find out you bought all the wrong stuff!) I know I have tried really hard to enjoy the few extra minutes of sleep I get in the morning.

Whether we checked everything off our summer bucket list or not, school is starting and our time is no longer our own. But as we send our kids off with the backpacks they had packed up days in advance wearing the outfit they had laid out the night before, we can look forward to all the exciting things they will learn and experience. Sure enough, a new adventure is beginning!

Karen Thomas is a stay at home mom of four daughters, has been on the PTA board at her kids' school for four years, and is a volunteer at her church, in addition to her activities as a volunteer soccer referee, a piano teacher, and a runner. Her column will appear here every Thursday. Comments are welcome.


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