I am officially the mother of a preschool graduate. I have a whole lot of emotions about this (sadness, pride, joy), but I think the one that stands out the most is excitement. There are some parents that may dread summer break (maybe once my kids are older I’ll hit that point), but not me. Summer break means not having to wake up at the crack of dawn to get my tired preschooler ready and out the door 20 minutes late. Yeah, I said 20 minutes late.
Friday was a normal day off from school, but since my husband woke up with the girls, I’m counting it as day 1 of summer vacay. Yes, vacay; this break is turning me into a tween. I laid in bed until 11 AM. 11 AM, people! It. Was. Glorious. I have this beautiful vision of waking up at 10 every morning to the birds tweeting and my children singing love songs to me. I felt so great getting up. Then I realized how much my body hurt from the awkward position I laid in for so long. But, hey, that’s not bad – I was in bed until 11 AM. 11 AM; if I stop saying it, it’ll become more like a dream.
Then my husband went to work at 1. It’s okay, I’ve dealt with the kids alone before; most days, actually. The girls went down for their nap late, but hey – they actually napped. They woke up at like 4:30, which means a later bed time. That’s okay, though. We can have lots of fun. It’s weird, though, isn’t it? How even if they’ve had a nap, at around 8 PM they start to go a little crazy? At least it wasn’t cranky crazy. It was just a slap happy crazy. Which made the dog slap happy crazy. Which meant that nothing I said was listened to. Which meant Mommy got a little crazy. Not the slap happy kind. The angry, pull-my-hair out kind of crazy.
That’s when it hit me. I am so excited to have my girls together with me at home, but I have grown accustomed to the easy nature of having one very small child to clean up after. I’ve also grown accustomed to only one child needing my attention at a time. Maybe summer wasn’t all I was thinking it would be.
Day 2 of summer vacation was the start of my husband’s week off from work (double vacay, yay!). That was a park day. A park day with an over tired really cranky husband and two beautiful girls who skipped their naps to go to the park. But, hey, it’s okay. I can ignore the grumpiness from my husband – how many times am I grumpy? I could teach classes on it so I should be able to handle it just fine. As for the girls, all I have to do is let them run rampant and they will pass out, no harm no foul. My new preschool graduate wanted to play a game of “Mommy, catch me!” I complied. How hard can it be? The answer: hard enough to chip a tooth and knock another one loose. Yeah. Felt awesome. Letting her run around back fired a little. When I caught her she still wanted to run but needed a jumping start, apparently. Jumped right into the bottom of my chin. The crack was loud enough that 3 sympathetic parents surrounding me stopped to make sure I was okay. I assured them I was. Now, it hurts to chew a banana on one side.
Summer vacation, yay! Insert eye roll here.
Right before bed of day two, my new preschool graduate and I were looking over some pictures from my wedding. We got to one where I was wiping my eyes as my husband spoke his vows to me. She covered her eyes and with a shaking voice in all seriousness said, “Oh Mom, I’m just trying not to cry. I’m going to cry because you are just so beautiful.” My world became rainbows and sunshine. Yeah, I felt like crap from weird, too long sleep. Yes I had a moment where I felt like I was going to hit something (it was a toss-up between the dog, my husband and a wall). In that moment, though, I was reminded of something.
It was a reminder of the good things that happened over the past two days. I got to hang out with my entire family (the stupid dog included). Do you know how rare that is? I got to watch my girls play lovingly together and hear their shrieks of laughter as they chased each other around the house. I got to hear my preschool graduate tell me over and over how much she missed me and how much she loved me. I got to hold both of my girls on my lap and have snuggle time. I got to be the one to fix my graduate’s boo-boos. I mean, really? How could I let those ten minutes of crazy overshadow everything else.
My mouth still hurts. I am still annoyed at the no-nap, slap-happy bedtime shenanigans. I will still have moments when I feel like I must control everything in my environment or I will simply die. My husband and I are bound to get on each other’s nerves.
More importantly: my mouth will heal. Before the shenanigans, I have about 10 hours of joy and laughter. I have two little people who want to be around me so much that they are willing to help me keep my environment contained if I just ask. My husband is here, being a father and loving on all of us.
This. This is going to be a great summer. It’s going to be an emotional summer and next year, my beautiful preschool graduate is going to be a kindergartener! So this, this is what I am going to make my summer about:
I am going to savor every minute of it.