19 February 2011

Time Changes

I'm happy this week is over. That's not entirely true. The passage of time doesn't have the same joyous effect as when I was young. Then, I counted every day until the end of school, so I could begin my luxurious summer vacation. I couldn't wait to become a teenager, and then a driver, then a voter, and a legal drinker! Later, there was college, graduation, marriage, jobs, children.

And now, I'm 46.

So, if I could slow the days, I might. After all my children leave. But I would still skip over this week, because emotions were running high.

My five children are currently educated in three separate school districts. One and Two are in our regional high school. Three and Five are in our local K-8 district. And Four attends a private school about thirty minutes away. This year none of the vacation breaks coincide. This week, One and Two had school Monday, but not the rest of the week. Four was home all week, and Three and Five had school. Next week, One and Two are off Monday, and Three and Five are on vacation Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Confused? Join the club.

Every day this week, after I smacked my alarm clock, I lay in bed wondering what day it was, and who was supposed to go to school. Then I went to wake half the sleeping children in each room. After I got them on their buses (a close call more than once) I came home and stood in the kitchen, sure I had forgotton someone. My mind boggled.

Having Four home all week is not good for his routine. Quite a bit of snow still covers our parks, so there could be no swinging or sliding. My yard has an icy shell on top of three feet of powder, so no sledding down the mountain into traffic. Consequently, Four was a little stir crazy, which affected his interaction with Five. There was a lot of rambunctious playtime, which devolved into injuries, accompanied by full-blown screaming and disowning. "That's it! You're not my brother!" was a popular refrain.

We have experienced this before, with different sibling pairs. I tell them there are plenty of mean people in the world, who will call them names, and hurt their feelings. That's why brothers need to be kind, and protect one another. Family is forever. They are young, so that seems like a long time. But I have watched the last twenty years fly by, and I know the truth. Maybe I won't wish away any more weeks.

Today's verse, to remember forever...

Tenderness and Rot

by Kay Ryan

Tenderness and rot   
share a border.   
And rot is an   
aggressive neighbor   
whose iridescence   
keeps creeping over.   

No lessons 
can be drawn   
from this however.   

One is not 
two countries.   
One is not meat   

It is important 
to stay sweet   
and loving.


  1. Anonymous19.2.11

    My mother used to say that having an odd number of children was the perfect answer, two of them could be "against" the other one (or three), or all could be "against" her and Dad. I found this to be true as well. It is absolutely hysterical when they ALL realize that "we" are the common enemy. Shocks them into a kind of team feeling (which is highly entertaining).
    Time DOES go too fast. But there are weeks (like the one you just lived through) that are best to let go of, and not want back.
    (Yeah, I kinda thought I had read all the "fails" and lyrics, but my OCD won't let me just think that, I have to actually go and check, it's fun in my head sometimes!)

  2. My grandmother always tells us "not to wish your life away." I've had to remind myself of that A LOT during this deployment with all the illnesses/snow days we've had. But it's hard.

    I am fairly certain I would be putting a child on the wrong bus more than once if I had to follow your schedule. And is it wrong that I'm a little disappointed you didn't fail Five? :)

  3. @Julie: the closest they've gotten to working together was agreeing to combine all the teenage birthday gifts (they're all winter babies) into one x-box 360. I worry what devious plots they might hatch if they all got along.

    Sarah: I was as surprised as you that I had no significant failure yesterday! Fear not; I'm sure I'll have new material come Monday.

  4. Oy Vey! Sometimes it makes me tired just reading your blog. And I'm with Sarah, someone would have been on the wrong bus.


Thanks for reading! Unlike other Diaries, this one isn't private. Feel free to share your thoughts. Politely, of course.