Oh man, here we are again, the first day of school. My boys woke up acting like it was Christmas morning, importantly packing their lunches into stiff backpacks and taking their new shoes out of the boxes. Well, two of my boys were excited, anyway. The third is a bit older and a significantly less in love with this whole school thing, but he was fine once we got him unzipped from his Beddy.
I wish I felt as confident as they look, but for me, it’s been a tough day. I went to Costco only to find out Kevin never ordered the photos that Rocco needs tomorrow; I went to the post office to make a return only to realize I didn’t have my shipping label; I got in the wrong line at the store and had to wait FOREVER; I bit my tongue at lunch; and anytime I talk to someone I start crying.
It’s partly because I wasn’t ready for summer to be over. We still had things on our list!
We still had afternoons to spend reading, days to spend at museums, hikes to hike, barbecues to host, board games to play, water balloons to throw. Even though we did so much this summer, there was still so much more to do.
But mostly it’s a hard day because I’m scared of September. Last year I had a huge meltdown when the kids went to school and I had all the time in the world to do whatever I wanted. Having unlimited time is kind of my worst nightmare. I start expecting so much out of myself and at the end of each day I always give myself a failing grade. I could have done more. I could have done differently. I could have done better.
This chair pretty well sums up how I feel about September.
I have different things in place this year, so maybe it won’t be so bad. I have a team of therapists, a rhythm to my writing days,and an ever-growing support group of other writers. I plan to substitute teach at my boys’ school one day a week so writing won’t be the only thing I measure myself with. I am adding the phrase “and that’s okay” to the end of my worries. “I don’t know what I’m going to write about—and that’s okay!” “This chapter doesn’t have a point—and that’s okay!” “I’m just not feeling it today—and that’s okay!” It’s helping. A little.
So anyway, here I am at my computer, blogging and editing photos and feeling already like a bit of a failure. I could be editing a picture book or writing a poem or going to the gym or learning to draw or studying a favorite author or writing my novel, but I’m not. Because it’s been a hard day.
And that, I guess, is okay.
WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Thai cucumber salad
Chocolate peanut butter pie