First Day of School

His new dress clothes, which pleased him to no end … he was pretending to be a full trash bag (that finger atop his head is the twist-tied part)I had more jitters than they did.  I believe they had none, to be exact … not exactly stomach-dropping fear when going to school means sitting down with your mom at the kitchen table after breakfast.  No lockers to find, no new teachers to meet, no bullies to make fun of the haircut you gave yourself because your bangs were “bothering you” the other day.  They loved having white-boarded assignments to check off, and beds to sprawl on while reading. 

They only protested minimally when I dragged them to 3 stores in the afternoon, hunting for cheap dress clothes for The Wedding of my SIL next month (which is a novel in itself, one that I’m trying hard NOT to write here as it’s taking up every other corner of my life and brain).  They were amazingly pleased to try on dress shirts and suit pants, who knew?!  Not I, that’s for sure, as Douglas protests if you suggest anything other than elastic-waist shorts and t-shirts. 

It was a good day, but I almost didn’t make it through breakfast.  I’m stretched thin right now, really thin, and am not sure how to fit it all in.  I was admittedly somewhat jealous of the moms I saw walking their kids to school this morning, as I headed out for my run.  It was momentary, but very real … wondering if I’m making the right choice in homeschooling again this year, when I have such a real need for time alone so I can get things done.  Then the thoughts follow that remind me: since when do I have to seek approval and satisfaction by my productivity?  Is my value still directly correlated to the length of my to-do list? 

I came home from my run to a still-silent house, which was amazing considering the fact that it was almost 9 am!  Insane, I know.  I started to fall apart in the kitchen, dripping sweat into the chocolate crepe batter that I’d decided was an important part of making today special.  How am I going to get it all done?  The four-hour marathon I’m hoping for in 2 months.  The wedding in 25 days, and the related projects I’ve taken responsibility for.  The semi-organized homeschooling my boys need.  Keeping the house functional during ceiling and kitchen repairs. Web client work.  Catnaps here and there. 

You know, it’s not rocket science.  It’s life, and it’s a lot more complicated than rocket science in my opinion.  However, the complications are my own choices, and I can only do one thing at a time.  Whatever doesn’t get done is … well … whatever!  Newsletters on Wednesday?  Sure.  Skip a short run, sleep on dirty sheets, eat the same meals over and over, and generally lower the bar on just about everything.  My optimism needs a shot of reality, which I think I got today.  Enjoying my kids was more important than staying on schedule.  We rolled, we had fun, and we learned … and it was a good first day.

Tomorrow?  There won’t be chocolate crepes with whipped cream and strawberries for breakfast (I just ate two more of the leftovers, how could any be left??) but it will be day two, and we’ll have at least one good day to build on, giving me hope.  One day at a time, and this too shall pass.  Sometimes cliches make the most sense, don’t they?