The Catch-22 of Back to School


In a few days, my youngest is starting middle school. She’s my last child in school. I work at home, so there really isn’t much that changes for me other than the need for an alarm clock and an earlier bedtime. No big deal. I used to be exactly like the moms flying in the air in the above portrayal of uncontrollable back to school elation, but truly, I’m kind of meh about about the whole thing this year. I don’t mind getting a jump start on my day, but when you think about it, back to school really means more work…FOR EVERYONE. You need to have the right snacks and fill out tons of paperwork and monitor planners and homework and filter through piles of fundraisers that no one wants to buy from and did I mention alarm clocks? Hmmm, so not so sure about it this year for the first time. However, I do relish the return to a more structured day, but that’s because my two at home have Autism. Structure produces more calm and sanity which can be in short supply around here.


I think there’s a big misconception that moms are home sipping cocktails and eating bon bons while the kids are in school. If they aren’t already heading off to the office or beginning work an hour or so earlier at home like in my case, I rarely get a chance to really sit down and just chill out with wine. (The preceding sentence is subject to change when all the paperwork comes home on Monday) In fact, I hear that other than the joy of going to Kohl’s alone (which unless you have the 30% off coupon is well, not as fun) most moms just keep on doing what they’ve done all along. Most of my former elation was having two children home all summer long with Autism literally going at me 18 hours a day, so back to school was a big hell yes here, but times are changing. My oldest has graduated and is working and I’m working most days from home so back to school is more work, but the rewards will be worth it in the end.


So, regardless of how you feel about back to school, you know what next week and the coming days will bring. Lots of first day pictures and other postings from all your friends with kids heading to school for the first time, the last time or beginning a new journey at college. Either way, I guess you have to not wish it all away too fast, even though a few hours to myself sounds pretty good right about now.

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