It’s been a while, I know. That last post about periods really took it out of me.
Now, though, we are fully immersed in summer. Like, flying leap off the sun baked pool deck into the deep end while the lifeguard and your mother simultaneously yell “No running!” but it’s too late because you’ve tucked your knees up to your chest and let gravity rocket you to the bottom of the well, letting that cold, chlorinated, (and let’s face it, diluted urine laced) water swallow you up, like the last mouthful of melted Flavor-Ice squeezed from the bottom of the tube.
Ahh, summer. . .that magical time of year when the days are longer, the temperatures are higher, and the children eat as though they’re preparing for hibernation.
Remember everything I said last summer about not liking summer break? About not letting my children’s happiness supersede my own? About how dumbstruck I am to hear people say, “I love summer break! I don’t have to make lunches!” — I still own all of that, make no mistake. I’ve tried to enjoy summer, really and truly I’ve tried. I reread an old start of summer post to motivate myself, which read, in part,
I’m hoping that me and the three love-bugs will spend many days outside just watching the clouds roll by and waiting for the delicious melody of the ice cream man rolling through the neighborhood.
There will be sidewalk chalk.
There will be bubble juice and every conceivable contraption to make bubbles.
There will be sprinklers and new bathing suits.
There will be trips to the pool.
There will be trips to the playground.
There will be Popsicle stained mouths and dirt stained knees.
There will be bug bites and lightning bugs trapped in jelly jars.
There will be cook-outs with ketchup stained paper plates.
There will trips to the Vineyard, to the grands.
There will be smiles and laughs and happiness.
Let’s get started. . .
We’ve been on break since the first week of June and by the first true day of summer, I was like. . .
How do I fill up the time? How do I make the summer fun for the girls without losing my mind? How do I keep the girls entertained while trying to get the mundane stuff done? How do I keep the girls from climbing the walls when it rains or when I don’t have an activity planned?
I became captain of Team Do the Most. There have been day camps! There have been road trips! There have been sleepovers with friends! There have been trips to the pool, the zoo, the Science Museum! There have been late afternoon movies matinees by dinner out at a restaurant of their choosing! Twice! In the same week!
What is happening?!
When I put chin in hand and really think about it, I’m ultimate trying to avoid 12 weeks of this:
My father asked me why insist on doing this. When I tell him that sometimes I want to do nice things for the girls, he tells me I’m too nice. He tells me that my kids live a “tit life” (*snort*). He tells me that I don’t have to any of the things that I jotted down in my “Summer ’18” folder (hey, can’t be Captain of Team Do the Most if you aren’t organized).
Me: But, sometimes, it’s nice to go out for ice cream.
Dad: Okay, but you don’t have to do it two, three times a week!
Me: But I like getting ice cream two, three times a week!
Last year, I talked about how I made my kids’ happiness the most important thing. Instead of dialing it back from the marathon of the school year, I have been tacking on another 13 miles and trying to run it with my best time ever. Don’t get me wrong, I want my kids to be happy, but I want me to be happy, too.
I said that I was willing to do the work to change my perception of what summer has to be. I said that I would going do things that make me happy which in turn will benefit the girls in the long run. We go to the movies twice a week — sometimes you just can’t wait for Netflix. We literally spend all.day.at.the.pool — I honestly didn’t think that was something you could do. We go to the Science Museum and walk the entire thing top to bottom, left to right, leaving no stone unturned and no public restroom unvisited.
And guess what? Everyone’s happy! #winning
Maybe we’ll get an ice cream to celebrate. . .
Tell me about your summer plans in the comments.
Also published on Medium.