We all knew that it was going to happen eventually. Try as we might, we cannot deny that yes, today and during the next several weeks, many teachers and students are going back to school- myself and my own children included.
I had such grand plans for so many accomplishments these last couple of months and yet, I completely squandered my summer. While friends’ feeds were boasting ripe homegrown tomatoes and other lush heirloom plant and vegetable varietals thriving in well-tended gardens and patios, I grew weeds. Quite well, I will say- just ask our neighbors.
This was to be the great summer purge of 2018, shuffling our kids into newly renovated rooms and creating a den. I’ve always wanted a den and… I still do.
We were going to rebuild that deck at our cabin. Well, it’s not a cabin, more like a shack really (I am a teacher after all), but we love it and try to spend lots of time there each summer. Deck? Nope.
Hardly used the pool. My husband called that one.
Never made it camping. The closest we got to a campfire was the few occasions I would grill or smoke something and those days were surprisingly few and far between. Cheese and potato chips served as many a dinner for us.
Where all of the above is concerned, yes, I completely squandered my summer. But was it wasted? Hardly. I believe that teachers and students place an incredible amount of pressure on themselves to do and accomplish so much during the summer months that we forget why we have summer break. It is just that- a break; a much-needed rest and reset so that we can get back to it this fall.
So why are my children scrambling to finish summer reading and assignments? Why have I barely cracked that pile of art education books I was going to tackle this summer? We were caught up in having fun.
While my kids were busy at various training camps or spending time with friends, I was at the studio. My daughter travelled by plane to National Development Camp alone for the first time. My son spent time on the Appalachian Trail (in the rain) on his first outward-bound trip. We travelled to Massachusetts, celebrated a couple of great weddings, saw family and friends we hadn’t in a while, watched some really bad reality TV and took the dog for long walks in the park. My husband and I enjoyed as many happy hours together as we could and even went dancing for no good reason.
So we didn’t get our to-do’s done; but, looking back on what I’ve written here, it seems our summer was pretty full. And I’ll be honest with you, my squandered summer has me ready to go back. I think we all are.
But if you are not ready, here are some suggestions for surviving the transition back to teaching this school year:
Above all, relax! Summer will be back before we know it. Maybe I’ll be lucky enough to squander it again next time…
Have a great start of the school year everyone!