Do you ever have first day of school blues? I did yesterday! We do all of the prep work getting ready for it and getting the school year all laid out. We’ve spent months working on the school year (ok, sometimes), picking out just the right curriculum, projects, books, activities, etc. Is your head swimming yet?
Before you know it, the first day of school is here; just breathe and don’t panic! You have in your mind happy smiling kids with everything going smoothly as you float from one subject to the next. Even the pets and the phone are cooperating. You’re up early and dressed (maybe even some makeup on) and you’ve fixed a nice breakfast. Then what?
It’s time to wake up the kids! What you didn’t know was that they had a plan all their own in their heads and going back to school wasn’t really a part of it. One or two kids wake up easily and sleepily make their way to breakfast. There at your nicely table-clothed table, one of them announces they aren’t hungry. You don’t mind because at least they weren’t rude about it. But where is child #3? He is still in the bed and after 4 wake up calls, he’s still knocked out cold.
Trying to be patient, after all he is a growing teenage boy, you wake him up with only mild threats directed towards an Xbox and his wakes right up. What you didn’t realize is that he was kept up all night by a puppy that refused to sleep and stay asleep; which explains why his head is on the nicely table-clothed table. But he eats his breakfast and tries to get moving. All day you have to remind him what to do because he’s basically sleepwalking through school. You have to remind him throughout the day of the necessity of Language Arts and that you can’t skip the grammar section of it and that yes, you really have to do all of those subjects.
Your eldest has an epiphany and realizes it’s her first last day of school. Senior year is finally here! Don’t cry, hold back those tears! Let her enjoy her moment. She goes through the day at a really good pace. No problems there.
Then there is the other child. The youngest, so sweet and innocent on the first day of school. But remember she was the one that didn’t want breakfast earlier. Time to get to work, but she doesn’t want to do any of it. Is she being stubborn? is she just toying with me? Is it because she’s a hormonal 13-year-old? Who knows?
After some threats made towards riding the bench for the day’s volleyball game and sending her to her room twice, she’s ready to work. Finally!
And what about the pets you may ask? Did they go along with your plan? No way! New puppy forget to let you know that he needed to go to the bathroom and knocked over a large glass of tea and shredded toilet paper all over the house. It would have been easier to clean up had he just teepeed the yard! The cats on the other hand were arguing with each other, too. But that was kinda funny to watch. Sad but true!
Finally the day is almost over and it’s time for reflection. Ok, so you’re reflecting while you watch a volleyball game, but who cares? This is actually enjoyable and you have a moment to think. Then after some thinking and chips, you decided that you actually worked at a pretty good click considering how it all started. Forget the tears you started to shed in your room after breaking up a sibling disagreement, sending one child to her room and possibly threatening everyone if they didn’t get to work. Doggone it! It’s the first day of school for Pete’s sake. It’s supposed to be perfect. You know, rainbows and butterflies and everyone getting along and working at their school work willingly and happily and by the time the game arrived, I was worn out! Thanks to caffeine and chocolate I made it through and the day was over.
I woke up late this morning and thought, “Oh, no. Here we go again.” But wait! I hear Scarlett’s voice in my head! “Tomorrow is another day.” That’s today! Another day!
Today will be better and it has been. Everyone is more relaxed and working. And it turns out that my youngest may be coming down with a cold or strep which totally explains yesterday. So it wasn’t me after all! Yesterday, really wasn’t such a bad day after all; with a little bit of reflection on my part. I just built it up too much with too many expectations of what the first day of school should be. You’d think after 12 years of homeschooling I’d know better!
The moral to this story: Don’t base your school year on your first day of school. Don’t put too many expectations on yourself or your kids. Relax, breathe and enjoy it. It will all be over too soon. Don’t forget to give yourself and the kiddos time to readjust to school after having summer break. And in the famous words of Scarlett O’Hara…….”Tomorrow is another day.”
Have a great school year everyone!