Wednesday, September 7, 2016


I feel like a child who is suffocating in a winter coat and shoved into a too-tight carseat.

That's about the best description I can figure for what my internal world is feeling right now in the midst of transition.  

This is my sobbing fit:
What do you mean I have to drive my kids to school, every day?  Sign a piece of paper?  Check off homework completion every night?  Make lunches?  Drag my 2 year old and 4 month old back and forth to school what feels like every half hour?

School has arrived.

I'm on day two, DAY TWO folks and I already feel the panic setting in.  "I think I'll just quit.  Throw in the towel.  Homeschooling here we come!  I can't do this."  My kids are feeling it too.  6 year old woke up and declared he is never going to school again.  He will not wear his shoes.  He will not eat his breakfast.  And he desperately said "you mean I have to go EVERY day, FOREVER?"

Pfffft. Yes.

You and me kid.  We will get through this ugly phase together.  Put on your game face and pull up your panties, Shannon.  September has arrived and you will survive!  

You will survive.... gradual entry requiring 8 trips to the school, in one day.
You will survive... an unforseen 50 minute commute instead of 10 minutes.  
You will survive... parents illegally parked in parking lots, blocking you in.
You will survive...complaints about every snack you send.
You will survive...100 newsletters with a bajillion dates for you to remember 

Transition can be ugly.  And that's ok.  It can be downright uncomfortable.  Like stiff new shoes and scratchy new shirts, it can be irritating.  It's like flying with kids: Shifty and panicked stares across the aisle with the other tired parent:  "how much longer is this flight...?"  That will be september.

So how do we ride out the wave of discomfort to get to a new 'normal.'  Here's what I figure:

Sleep more.
Lean in closer.
Forget all but the important things. (No house cleaning, duh).
Believe it will get better.
Make space for emotion.
Be gracious to ourselves, our kids, and the other wide-eyed and panicked parents.
Ride it out.

We can do this, parents.  We can make it.  The next week is going to be like gravy wrestling- awkward and violent- but it's normal (or so I've been told).

I'll leave you with better imagery than that:

I remember when Silas refused to try the waterslide.  He was finally tall enough.  Finally could swim well enough.  And every time we took him swimming we would all gaze at the slide and it felt unconquerable.  He would refuse, every time.  Except when he finally didn't.  We encouraged, we prodded, we all held our breath (figuratively and literally) and at the bottom of the slide he emerged.  He got up, shook himself off, smiled huge, and then his enthusiasm couldn't be contained.  I SHOUTED with joy at his survival and accomplishment and felt such joy in watching him discover that he could in fact do the slide, and then marveled at him doing it over and over again successfully.

So IT WILL be with school.  They will learn.  They will accomplish.  They will come out the other side, shake it off, and do it again. 

Good luck.  Be sane at drop off and pick up.  Love on your teachers.  Pray.  Park legally for heaven's sake, and RIDE this transition out.

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