It’s Wednesday today, on the last week of school holidays. All around me fellow parents are high-fiving that it is almost over. And I’m crying.
I normally feel a little sad at the end of each lot of school holidays, sad that it went by so quickly, sad that time in general is so darn fast moving. But this year, gah I’m a wreck. It’s not just the fact that Ryan starts school this year, so I will be a mother of two school aged children. I’m mourning the fact that it all went by so fast that I almost feel like I missed it.
And I’m not just talking about school holidays anymore. I’m talking about their little lives. This year Mia will be 8 and Ryan will be 6. And I am having a heard time accepting that reality. I feel like I always said next week and now the next weeks are gone so to speak. And by that I mean the next weeks of having my babies home with me. Having us being their biggest influences. Being able to just head to the beach, the park, Grandma’s or whatever really for the day. I can still do that with Connor, but that time, that stage with my big two has gone.
I have never been one of those parents who look forward to their children being just a little bit older so they can get out and do more. I adore them being babies and toddlers. I adore them thinking that those of us who live within these four walls are the be all and end all of existence. I adore that time, those years. And I am gutted that for two of my babies its well and truly over.
It almost seems crazy to me that this will be Mia’s fourth year at school and this is the first time I’ve really cracked. But when I look back over it all, it kinda makes sense. When Mia started school, Todd was living in Wagga and Mia, Ryan and I were on the Gold Coast. And while I cried and missed her and turned up at the school half an hour early to wait for her in the afternoons, I was so busy juggling work, the household, and very temperamental 2 year old who threw the biggest fits I have ever seen, all without my husband. I didn’t have time to dwell on the bigness of it all.
Then half way through the school year, we picked up and moved to Wagga to be with Todd. It felt like by the time we got settled into life, work and school in a new place where I knew no-one but my own little family, the year was over. We visited family over the Christmas/New Year break and then when we went back and school started up again, I was homesick like crazy. Then was the countdown to a posting, getting the posting, getting ready for the posting and then again moving halfway through the school year.
We moved back to Queensland, with an extra little bundle for good measure, and got ourselves set up again. I was so sick for the first part of my pregnancy with Connor and the just as I was feeling better we had to prepare ourselves for Todd to go away with work for three months, this time overseas. Then he went. And we missed him, we cried, we kept going with school and we coped. Then the year was over. We enjoyed every moment of our Christmas school holidays and the year started up again, when I was only a few weeks away from having CJ. I was nesting and had a million appointments to go to and the back to school time was a blessing. Once he was born the year seemed to propel forward to its end.
And here we are now.
Anticipating another beginning of the school year with tears in my eyes and enough time to actually let it all sink in.
I have a tightness in my chest and a lump in my throat as I look back over it all. Did we do enough fun stuff, did we have playtime enough, did I equip them well enough, did I build up their confidence enough, did I teach them enough. Did I, did I, did I.
The truth is there is no way of knowing, I just have to have faith that we did. I just have to believe that they know beyond any measure of doubt that I love them and love being around them and that I count down the hours till I get to pick them up, hold them tight and pry information about their days out of them with milk and cookies.
I guess it’s time to really embrace that stage of life with my big littles, and grip on tightly to baby CJ because in a blink of an eye it will be him loading up his too big backpack and being filled with anticipation about his first day of school.