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Tag Archives: enjoy yourself. it’s later than you think

Freedom is mine… And I’m feeling good.

Lately I’ve been waking up around 5:00am.

While, I’m naturally an early riser, this is early even for me. I think middle school has hyped me up a bit. Unconsciously, I worry about my son getting up, if he’s completed everything that needed to be done, if he’s ready for the new school day. Since I can’t fix and do everything for him, I compensate for any potential failings by preparing the perfect lunch. A+ for me.

By 6:30am, two of my three boys are usually awake. It’s the middle-schooler who needs to get up that is still sleeping. I gently shake his warm body until he yells something unintelligible and falls back unconscious. This happens at least three more times at five minute intervals, until finally I turn on the light, rip off the covers and throw clothes on top of his head.

By 7:30am, he’s out the door.

I finish up organizing and feeding my younger two, negotiating with them to put on their socks, brush their teeth, eat their breakfast. Pretty much everything I need to get done for them is a negotiation. Like I would be the one embarrassed if they went to school with their shirt inside out, or in trouble if they didn’t finish their homework, or mortified if the girl they ultimately asked to the prom turned them down because they had no teeth. Okay, fine, I would.

Finally, the bus arrives and I wave, smile and jump up and down manically for the two little faces, one with dark curly hair, the other blonde and straight, pressed to the window watching me in amusement.

By 8:30am, they are officially all off to school, and I am in my house alone for the first time in over ten years.

I thought, being a generally sappy mom, prone to stalking, suffocation and crying lapses, that I would take this transition hard.

There’s no one cracking up while doing goofy dances for VideoStar. There’s no running through the halls, pounding down the stairs, or racing cars across the wood floors. There’s no one fighting over who likes macaroni the most or who can climb a tree highest. There’s nothing but silence.

No children giggling. No children fighting. No children.


I am almost shocked at how thrilled I am with this time to myself. I flip the laundry. La la la. I do some exercise. La la la. I run a few errands. I sit at the computer and write! La la halle-freaking-lujah!

I am so content in my bubble with myself that I have actually turned down lunch with friends. Neither, do I have time to shop. I need to revel in the glory of my silent house; my fingers dancing on the keyboard, an ice cream for lunch. Me. Me. Me.

Maybe soon I’ll grow wistful, but right now, there’s a party in my house. And I’m the only one invited.

Busy, busy, busy.

No, you can’t join me.

This the best sucky summer ever!

These are the three most frequent complaints coming out of my mouth this summer.

I can’t believe 5 year-old is not in camp.

Are you kidding me, another game tonight??

5 year-old is annoying me.

It’s true, this summer has not gone according to plan. Not that I had a plan, but I wasn’t prepared for baseball averaging five nights a week, and my five year-old putting the kabash on camp for even a few hours each day. On top of that, 8 year-old had some bus issues, so now I’m driving him every morning and either picking him at camp or at a friend’s each afternoon.

There’s a whole lot of schlepping back and forth, a whole lot of laundry and a whole lot of run, run, run! At times, I feel frustrated, stressed and a little overwhelmed. For some reason, I expected summer to be more relaxing, but reality has crushed my expectations.

The truth is my crushed reality is actually a very satisfying, full summer. Yes, I pretty much have seen no friends. Yes, I’ve had very little down time. And, even though, my 5 year-old and I are spending so much quality time together that the word quality is questionable, I can see a day in the not so near future when I am no longer his favorite person. He will not cling to me like this forever. I don’t know if we’ll even make it another year, but I’ll be damned if I’m not going to appreciate this beautiful, bouncy boy constantly tugging annoyingly at my shirt.

I love you. now go away.

I love you. Now go away.

Even as my feisty 8 year-old spits fire in my direction, I marvel at his desperate and aggressive need for independence. Plus, the minute he runs out of steam, he happily holds my hand.

Soon we'll be holding hands... sigh

Almost out of steam… Allllmooost.

While my 11 year-old may ignore me while meditating to a computer game, I live for the goofy grin I get once he recognizes I’ve been trying to reach him from the outside world.

Wait for it...

Wait for it…

There it is.


And baseball? Well, despite it being my least favorite major league sport, there’s nothing like watching your kid play. Even if you’re watching with your hands covering your eyes, while gritting your teeth and holding your breath.

So on many summer nights, okay most, I am lounging in my Tommy Bahama chair, an iced coffee in the side drink pocket, surrounded by friendly parents, cheering our kids while our other kids become part of the scenery; having a catch or kicking a ball, or even sometimes, when the slushies are really blue and the pretzels are salty and soft, leaning up against the fence watching their brother play.

I’ve got nothing to complain about.

My happy cage

I know why the caged bird sings…