This is going to be a straight talk session I’m going to have with you and what I feel like back to school feels like for us moms. No nonsense. Straight talk about back to school, the good the bad and the ugly, and letting go. Grab some Kleenex and a cocktail. Things about to get real. This post reflects my personal feelings and my experiences. And I believe as parents we do the best we know to do. That is all we can do. Right? The truth about back to school. Coming from mom.
I remember a long time ago when I just gave birth to my daughter, my first born, I was so depressed because I missed that feeling of her kicking and fluttering inside of my tummy. I didn’t quite miss as much her stretching her little legs into my rib cage and me pushing her legs out of my rib cage, (yes I literally could push her little feet down from my ribs with the balls of my hands!), but I miss that feeling inside. Mind you I was one of those creatures that absolutely LOVED every minute of being pregnant AND childbirth. Crazy, I know! Anyways, I told my mom that I was so sad and her reply was this. “Irene, snap out of it. Do you want to have her in your tummy the rest of your life? You get to hold her, you get to touch her, kiss her, love on her, and watch her grow. What good is she going to be inside your tummy your whole life??? Come on! SNAP OUT OF IT!”
That was it. And that was a huge defining moment for me. It’s a moment that I’ve gone back to and reflect year after year as I watch the kids grow so bittersweetly. They’re born so that one day they can be released to fly.
As with any mom, back to school for me is a moment of thrill and excitement because I get my life back. FINALLY! But at the same time, it lets me know that the days are limited that they’re home. I never thought about that when they were 2 and 5. Or 6 and 9. Or even 10 and 13. I just pushed any thoughts about it out of my head as any normal person begins that phase of denial. But with each creeping year goes by, I have that knot in my stomach. And today was one of those days.
We have our rituals as I’m sure so many do. We take the FDOS (first day of school) picture in front of the school crest so that we can rejoice in how they grow year after year. And today it clicked. Next year will be the VERY last time I do that picture. GULP. Cold sweat.
And while as they grow older and become more independent, their “need” for mommy to hang around and be around isn’t there as much. So they aren’t HARD per se. So it’s not like they take SO much of my precious time. They ARE my purpose. I had them to be their MOM. However, my life is more challenging during the summer months because my situation is more unique than most because 1. my daughter has her own business, 2. I try to run mine and the same time, and 3. I want to give as much attention to the boy, which he could give a flying flip about at the moment, as he’s on his Xbox, Minecraft and whatever other social gaming he does with his 8 other friends online. Mom who?
But yet they still need me. Business or not. Mom, are these orders going thru? Mom we need to talk to this rep. Mom when are you going to the grocery store? Mom, what’s for dinner? Mom, I’m out of clean underwear. Mom, can all the girls come over for a sleepover? Mom, can all the boys come over and swim? Mom, my shoes don’t fit anymore. Mom… mom… mom… MOM!
Mommy-hood comes with phases. We have those FDOS’s…. The first one that hits is the one when they leave for school for the first time, ALL DAY. THere’s this mini gasp for a moment when you leave them there, and you drive away without them, alone, for the rest of the day. (Bring on the celebrations!!! FINALLY ME TIME!) but JUST for that moment, we gasp to know there’s one more sting that’s cut to release them.
There’s another FIRST that is huge that most mommy’s don’t discuss. At least for me, this was how I felt. The moment they drive away, with their license for the first time. What? They don’t need me to take them to soccer anymore? How can that be? Or pick them up from school if they’re sick? Wait, what???? This is my time in the car when we sing and dance and talk about the drama of the day. Ya… no more. Snip. ANother string is cut and they’re one step closer to no longer needing me.
And this “space” I’m in is so interesting. When I began blogging over 5 years ago, I was surrounded by young girls mostly, millennials. Newlyweds or getting married. Now, we embark on “The Baby Boom.” The NEXT baby boom mind you. Even one of my affiliates, RewardStyle recognized this trend so they added a LikeToKnow.It “family” division. Makes sense! So I share this post to all new mommies and hope all old moms relate and chime in some great words in the comments below.
This is the MOST REWARDING job on the face of the earth. Since the moment I conceived them, they were and will be my number one. My job and goal is to raise decent, kind, caring, compassionate humans so that when they’re ready to fly, they can soar into high places. Is it hard? YES. Is it at times frustrating? VERY. Is it worth it? Beyond anything in the entire world. It’s priceless.
Just like they will one day fly and soar hopefully higher and farther than we have flown, the time WILL fly. Enjoy them. Savor them. Eat them up. Be PRESENT in their PRESENCE. You will blink and they’ll be gone. But like my mom said… that’s how it’s supposed to be. they’re not supposed to be with us forever (thank God! although moments make us never want to let them go.). It is what it is, it’s the circle of life.From one mom to the next.
From one mom to the next.
Grab your kleenex… and that cocktail!