Monday, August 18, 2014

The Very Familiar Unfamiliar School Year

It’s the familiar screeching of your alarm clock that always seems to come too early. It’s the familiar feel of loading the lunch boxes while jockeying for position at the coffee maker. It’s the familiar morning ritual of gathering the hair supplies to braid her hair just like she has been planning for days. It’s the unfamiliar way she roughly grabs the brush out of my hand only to tell me she wants to be independent and do it herself.

It’s the familiar drive and dip in the road that I seem to hit every single time. It’s the familiar and eerie quiet ride to school while everyone ponders through their nervous thoughts. It’s the unfamiliar when I decide to keep my mouth shut and not break the painful silence with last minute pieces of advice.

It’s the familiar sounds of friends greeting each other after a long and yet ever so short summer break. It’s the familiar looks of angst and rolling of the eyes when you ask to take their picture outside of school because after all, “someone might see us”. It’s the familiar faces of moms you swore to yourself you would get to know when you first started Kindergarten 5 years ago and have yet to say hi to. It’s the familiar feeling of wondering what time do these moms get up to look that put together and since when are yoga pants, a baseball cap, and big sunglasses not stylish at morning drop off? It’s the unfamiliar way that my 2nd child has asked me to keep a safe distance and not walk with him.

It’s the familiar 5th grade girl who can barely contain her excitement over her safety patrol belt and would absolutely die if she knew I was sneaking her picture from across the way while on duty. It’s the familiar little boy whose dimple and blue eyes peek out from his glasses with all the confidence in the world letting you know he’s gonna rock 2nd grade! It’s the familiar little sister on my hip who can’t quite understand why her playmates aren’t coming home with us. It’s the unfamiliar world stopping moment when my oldest decided to hug me in public before I walked off.

It’s the familiar sound of the school bell and the squeals of excitement as they quickly run to their rooms. It’s the familiar one more look over the shoulder before heading out of sight to make sure you’re still there that didn’t come this year. It’s the familiar heart beating hard as you hold back the inevitable tears that you thought would stop coming after Kindergarten.  It’s the unfamiliar when you are able to make it to car before they fall.

It’s the familiar quiet ride home that makes it feel even lonelier. It’s the familiar pit in your stomach because this stage of your life seemed so far away and yet now, it’s your reality. It’s the familiar thought of wondering where the time went. It’s the familiar “did I” thoughts that haunt you for most of the morning. Did I soak up the moments enough, did I listen enough, did I teach them enough, did I make them feel special enough, did I take enough time letting them know just how incredible they are….which leads into the familiar “what if” questions that will probably plague my mind until pick up time rolls around this afternoon. It’s the familiar sound of moms with older children saying, “It gets easier”. It’s the unfamiliar burden of wondering when exactly does the “easier” begin.

It’s the familiar hopes and dreams I have for each one of them as they start a new school year. It’s the unfamiliar though that will make this ride even more of an adventure and help us to grow!

Here’s to a great 2014 – 2015 school year….let the fun begin!


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