Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Secret I Won't Let My Kids Know

It's almost June and you know what happens in June.  School is out for summer!  I can hear that refrain from Alice Cooper's rockin' song repeating endlessly in my head right now.  School's out for summer!  School's out forever!  While it's not out forever, it is out for summer and things change, for the better. 

Anyway, the little secret I won't let my kids on is that I love school being out as much as they do, maybe even more.

No more rushing to get them off to school.
No more arguing over homework.
No more rushing to the store for printer ink because "my report's due tomorrow!"
No more rushing to the store for "________" because "the class party is tomorrow and I said I would bring ________".
No more "consequences" for unacceptable grades, due to lack of effort of course!
No more open houses.
No more parent-teacher conferences that make me feel like I'm a kid in trouble all over again.
No more band concerts.
No more football, soccer or lacrosse practices and games.
No more carpools to coordinate.
No more boy scout meetings.
No more music lessons.
No more early bedtime mandates.
No more rushing home to feed the kids due to said early bedtime mandates.

You see, this year is an interesting one.  I have three kids in three schools - one elementary, one middle and one high school.  This means that I have three times everything - three different locations with three different start times, three band concerts, three open houses .  You get the point.  I know parenting in the early years is difficult.  At this stage though?  I can't say it's really any easier, it's just different challenges.  I feel like a drill sergeant.  I have to be to get it all done.

Ahh, but summer is almost here.  I find myself longing for it.  I will be able to sleep in just a little bit longer.  I'll be able to function with much less structure.  The household calendar will not be my lifeline, only a mere crutch.  Yes, it's true.  I love summer more than my kids.

And so I go about my summer secretly relishing in the downtime.   You might wonder why I won't let my kids in on this secret.  Primarily, I want them to like school.  I don't want them to see it as work, even though we know it is.  I don't want them to enjoy lazy because I fear they will become lazy.  I don't want to raise kids like that.  I want industrious kids; kids who like to do things.  People who complain when there's work to be done only make things harder on themselves.  It's the outlook you approach to life that makes it "work" or not, and that's the behavior I want to model.  Am I good at it?  Not likely.  I tend to wear my emotions in plain view.  They know the scoop.  Whatever, that's fine.  I'll still try anyway.
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