Sunday, September 1, 2019

A Seamless Transition, But Not For Mom

Shockingly I didn't fall in the water. However, moments before this I got my shoe wedged in between two rocks and thought I would have to go without a shoe for the rest of the day. Typical these days.

Typically the school year takes some time to get into. There's some tough mornings and exhaustion in the afternoons. We live off of our calendar because it takes time to get into the new school year routine. It usually takes a few weeks for the new normal to sink in.

For the first time ever, the minis transitioned to school happily and seamlessly. There were no disappointed "awe, I'm gonna miss summer" lines spoken. In fact, on the first day of school, they ran out the door without even getting their usual first day of school treatment (much less a picture with mom and dad). The youngest two have been soooo excited to be the only two at the elementary school, while the oldest somehow is adjusting to middle school better than I ever could have imagined. It's helped because he's had his two buddies with him.

It's the end of the first week of school and the minis are happy as can be. And I'm exhausted. Struggling in fact.

It's kind of ironic once I think about it. Usually at the end of the summer I get a little melancholy thinking about all of the kids, who were once my babies, leaving daycare once again and heading back to school. I spend three months watching them grow and play and be kids. Then I send them off to school with a hug and a "see you on breaks and next summer." Obviously, it's a little different with my own three, but still, the same concept. This was the first year I hugged each child and didn't feel that tug of a little bit of sadness. As always, I was genuinely excited for them and their new adventures, while I was excited for the quietness the school year brings to daycare.

In years past, at least two (if not all) of my children complain about the end of summer, how they're not quite ready for the school year. They struggle to say goodbye to their daycare friends and the beginning of the school year is mixed with crankiness and exhaustion as they try to get used to their new routine. This year, everything is the opposite of how it's been in the past. Maybe I prepared myself too much for how the beginning of the school year typically goes so now that it's different I'm a little lost.

All I know is that my head isn't clear, I'm off of my game (which can't happen because I'm headed into a busy few weeks), and I can't keep track of anyone's schedule. If it weren't for all of the neighborhood kids walking and descending on my house, coming to walk with the younger two, I would have sent them to school late three mornings this week. Oddly, I haven't had any issues getting into the oldest's new schedule, which is far more confusing than the other schedules I need to keep track of!

I spent my Thursday drowning my lack of a smooth transition. I know I'm not alone. We were all beaten down and haggard from that first full week. As humans, it's in our nature to not adapt to change well. Science tells us it takes an average of 66 days for something to become a routine. That's over two months. If I'm to believe science, apparently my children aren't average and I'll be in a fog for the next several months.

I see many mental health breaks for myself in the coming weeks and probably a clearing of my schedule until I can get into a good groove. It's funny how I can prepare myself over and over again, but life keeps me on my toes. Never could I had predicted that the beginning of the school year would go this smoothly for the minis and a disaster for me. Life - 1, Ashlen - 0.