Today is August 20th and school starts for us on September 5th. If my children have 180 days of school and all three will be packing a lunch this year, that means I have 15 more days before my whole life changes at the rate of a speeding train, headed my way. Summer and it’s hallmark of no alarm clocks is nearly over. Instead we hurtle towards the time of our life where the mornings are crazed and cranky and often verging on catastrophic. And I hold in my hand a lunchbox that makes me want to cry.
It isn’t just because three kids times 180 days, minus a varying number of sick days and hot lunch options equals approximately 500 mornings of “oh dear, what am I going to send the kids for lunch?”
It isn’t because of those approximately 500 lunches, none are likely to be the same due to the wildly different meal choices of my three kids.
And it isn’t because I am so addlepated in the morning that I can barely get myself ready, let alone three kids.
It’s because I’m holding Littlest’s lunchbox.
He has a lunchbox this year.
He needs to take a lunch this year because in 15 days he starts first grade, and that means he is well on his way to wherever he’ll go…as a grown-up.
Funny how an insulated lunchbox, on sale for only $6.99, can make a mama freak out.
So in 15 days, if you see me looking a bit worse for wear, you’ll know it’s because all three kids demanded different things for lunch, the bus was earlier than I expected, all the shoes were mysteriously missing, and my coffee went cold while I rushed to the bus stop, wearing yoga pants and a sweatshirt over my jammies.
And that train rushing towards me? It is more than a story problem of differing directions and speeds. It’s the proof that my kiddos are growing up everyday.
So today? I’m going to suggest we do more of summer’s lazy nothingness, but this time cuddled on the couch where I can smooth hair and rub backs and smile at the young people who were my tiny babies just a blink of an eye ago.