There is much confusion around our house about when summer officially starts. The concept of being on summer break versus the beginning of the actual season of summer is especially perplexing to Hattie, who asks, nearly daily, “Is it summer yet?”
I’ll tell you how I know.
Everyone cancels everything in summer.
This may sound delightful to those of you who go constantly and look forward to the downtime. But if you’re like me, a stay-at-homer who pines for adult conversation, the simultaneous break from school, Mother’s Day Out, my beloved monthly mom’s group, and children’s activities at church and everywhere else means a sharp decrease in my sanity.
Ask Josh. He’ll tell you.
When I realized the other day that the 10-hour-a-week preschool program that Hattie and Christian attend won’t be resuming until September, I nearly cried.
There went grocery shopping. There went coffee with friends. There went time to clean without someone un-cleaning behind me. Most tragically, there went time to write.
I sent frantic texts to a fellow stay-at-homer that afternoon. I’m not sure I’m going to survive this.
Edy considers herself a first-grader now, and I don’t know how that happened. School just started, didn’t it?
As I sorted through the gobs of papers she brought home on the last day—the alphabet written and re-written, her numbers 1-100, cat-bat-and-hat rhymes—I couldn’t believe how quickly it had gone. I know everyone says that, but it didn’t seem so true until this year. Living by the school calendar means the years of her life suddenly have beginning and ending dates. First day and last. Start and finish.
One grade down, 12 to go.
It sounds like a lot, but it won’t be. Not if it breezes by as quickly as this one did.
And, again, I nearly cried.
I’m not sure I’m going to survive this.
Then, by God’s sweet mercy, a friend wrote. Like me, she’s also an author and blogger, and she mentioned how hard it was to find time to write between the sports and the kids and life’s interruptions. She could relate to my conundrum.
However, very un-like me, she wasn’t at all teary about it.
Instead, she spoke wisdom, “I don’t want to miss ministry because I’m too busy writing about it.”
She is brilliant, I tell you.
So that’s my mission this summer: to enjoy my kids.
To not miss this ministry because I’m busy with another.
To not clean when I can swing.
To not work when I can color.
To not worry about blogging when my favorite things to blog about are in the backyard, needing a good, stout spraying with the water hose.
Because if there’s something better going on at my house, I intend to be in the middle of it.
I’m not saying I won’t blog at all this summer. I may post just as regularly as usual. Or I may not. For once in my life, I’m going to attempt to be flexible.
I just have no doubt that when I get to the end of my time on this earth it’s highly unlikely I’ll wish I’d have written more blog posts. It’s extremely unlikely that you’ll wish you’d read more blog posts. (Except for mine. Which you should always read, and never miss, and religiously share on Facebook, and brag to all your friends about…)
Nope. It’s safe to say neither one of us will miss this very much.
So let’s not waste these precious days on busying ourselves with whatever it is we busy ourselves with. There is something better running around our backyards.
In my case, there are four Something Betters, and they need the kiddie pool filled up with bubbles right this very minute.
Mission: Enjoy Your Kids.
Because, by golly, we’re not only going to survive this summer, we’re going to enjoy it.
Who’s with me?
Yes, yes, yes!!! I love it! Take it from someone who is about to be an empty-nester–you will NOT regret building those soul-ties with your children. And you will need them desperately to get you through the rocky teen years. If they KNOW that you love them, then they will be more likely to trust you even when they disagree with you. Enjoy your dear kiddos–they are a precious gift!!!
I wish we had “like” buttons here! Amen! So glad you’re catching on while you still have time! Before you turn around twice, you will be feverishly planning a wedding!!!
What a great post!!! I am in… My ministry looks a lot different than yours or stay at home moms or moms in that case. My minstrtry is from 9:30am-5:30pm I get to spend my summer with a classroom full of 1 year olds. There are times I cry at a milestone as well, it’s with other people’s kids. For example, I got a text from a friend who I worked with in Iowa all the kids I spent so much time with for 4 years are starting kindergarten next year. Getting an e-mail from a friend in Arkarksas about a child I worked with special needs, we worked on goals, she made an impact on my life in the 5 years I worked with her. She is now in 6 th grade and got an award for her hard work and it’s going to help her get a new wheelchair. I am so proud of her! It’s moments like these that I can say this is why I do what I do.
And you are amazing at what you do, dear. 🙂
Love, love, love this post.
Thanks, Sally. 🙂
I’ll be joining you in the summer mission! Thanks for the challenge. I had already planned to officially take July off by just posting the “best of” for a few weeks. (I hope that’s allowed in blog-world) Parks & beaches, here we come.
I say anything is allowed. We’re not getting paid for this, right? At least I’m not…
As we say in the military ( wives that is )
Semper Gumby! Always flexible!!!
Love reading your blogs, you are doing a great job!
Thank you, Helen. And thank you for reading!