… and I fully appreciate why my mother hated it when I was a kid. Ever since 12noon on July 1st, I’ve been waiting for the new school year. It’s been a huge mash up of playing taxi driver and feeling inadequate. What a combination.
Let’s start out with the kid cried because the school year was over. Last night he woke up crying from a nightmare – that school had ended forever. In the back of my mind, I secretly hope he will still feel this way as he gets older, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to need to restrain that optimism sooner or later. In any case, he is counting down the days till school reopens in September.
And this is where I feel inadequate.
School is his social stomping ground with kids his age. With kids, period. He’s my only child, so despite having siblings, they don’t live with him and so the grown ups in the house are his immediate social circle. Yes, I’ve got friends with kids around his age but we don’t see each other as often as maybe we probably should. You see, I’ve become a bit of a social recluse. I didn’t set out with that intention, it kind of just happened between work and school and his activities. I have little energy and even less desire to go anywhere or do anything. There’s a small group of a handful of folks that “see me” on a regular basis, but in reality it’s because our activities (professional & personal) overlap. With my lack of real desire to go anywhere or do anything, he’s stuck with me (and the dog) and I’m drowning in guilt.
He had big plans for summer and the activities he wanted to do, and the places he wanted to go. My budget said otherwise so the plans had to be “scaled back” a bit (OK, a LOT). I’m grateful he’s such an understanding kid in disappointment, but to be honest it just makes me feel worse. Now add his back to school countdown so he can “see his friends” and I’m thinking maybe another cup of coffee will help me get out of the house and get him some interaction with someone other than me (and the dog). I’m torn between exhaustion and guilt… what a combination.
This morning as I was leaving for work he chased me to the front door and gave me a huge hug.
“I just have to tell you something, Mummy”, staring up at me with those big brown eyes.
“Thank you for being my mummy.”
I waited until I had driven away before I pulled over and had a good cry. I now fully appreciate every article/blog/whatever I’ve ever seen that said no matter what you do or don’t do, you’ll always worry that you’re failing them.
He’s such an amazing kid.
Now please excuse me, he’s got swimming and kung-fu this afternoon and I don’t want to be late for my taxi driver duties.
Sorry it’s been so long.