Monday, August 24, 2015

The Bittersweet Back to School

So many times recently we've been asked if we are "ready for back-to-school"? Every time, I enthusiastically shake my head yes while the boys do the opposite and say no!  They claim they aren't ready for summer to be over and when they are in the midst of a loving brotherly fight, I can not wait for the day to finally get here!
Now that the day is finally here, I've been finding myself thinking.  They are excitedly getting ready, claiming to "get up early" in anticipation of the first day.  All the while, I say up late, preparing lunches, and crafting teacher gifts and thinking...
It seems as though the tables have turned a bit.  Now that I will be saying goodbye to them every morning and watch them crawl under the fence and walk to school I keep thinking of all the things we didn't do or maybe didn't do enough of this summer.  I think of all the helpful things I have found with them being home with me all summer.  I wonder WHO will help me keep their sweet sister out of all kinds of trouble and who will find her paci. shoes, hair bows when I don't have them around to enlist their help.  And then I remember that I'll be able to go to the store without complaints BUT I will have to remember my own list because I don't have any little human recorders to give it to me verbatim.  I think of the creek up in Conroe, the one we didn't go to last week because we ran out of time.  There won't be time in the afternoons to drive that far and sure, there will be weekends but everything is crowded on weekends!  I pack up the pool bag and the pool toys because the daily pool trips and picnic lunches are over for another year.  I already miss being the camp taxi and while it wrecked my workout schedule, it was fun to drop them off for merely 3 hours and have them come bounding back to the car declaring which taco stand they wanted to check out today!

As I wipe away the salty tears, I have to repeat over and over again the "don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened" catch phrase.  It's true, we had a great summer, one that I hope they will always remember.  Not only for the EPIC things we did but for the everyday pool trips, VBS, and impromptu park dates we were able to indulge in without having a schedule.  I have to remind myself how incredibly fortunate we all are that Jason works tirelessly to provide for us and affords us the luxury of having me at home with them all summer to make so many memories.  Memories that will have to last us until next summer when we can do it all over again.

I know as they enter another school year it means that they are growing up.  It also means they are becoming the boys that we have raised them to be from when they were infants.  They are learning, discovering and becoming and that is what we want for them.  Seeing them thrive in their new classes and making new friends is knowing we've done our best for them and will continue to be here to shepherd them.  They rely on us not only for amazing memories that are in the past but for the promise of a future.

So as much as I want to just call this whole thing off and keep them home with me to keep up the fun (chaos!), I'll watch them leave and wave goodbye.  I'll tell them I love them and blow kisses each morning and they know I'll be there in the afternoon awaiting their return.  Because smiling proudly of my two young men as they enter the next school year, it's what I do!  (and silently crying when door lock clicks, it's ALSO what I do!)

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