I am re-posting this by special request.  I originally wrote and posted this article in August 2009.  This is not technically the night before school, but alas my friend is begging me to re-post.

Tags are trimmed off new clothes and the door lined with shoes.  Packs are stuffed with supplies that have never been used.  Uniforms are laid out with white bobby socks too, and my children are sleeping, I know not what to do.  Should I blog, should I work, should I sit and boo-hoo?  It’s the night before school starts for Thing 1 and Thing 2!

I’ve cried lots of tears getting ready for school.  In the very same moments I’ve thought it was cool.  School is cool and it’s bad, I must be going mad.  I cry when I smile and I laugh when I’m sad.  These kids they just do it, I don’t know what to say.  I love them so much, so much more every day.  But they drive me so crazy!  Get under my skin!  They whine and they fight and they do it again.

“This color-book’s mine!”
“No!  I had it first!”
“Well I have it now!” down the hall voices burst.

“I’m telling mom!”
“Well I’ll tell her too!”
“You can’t have my color-book, or I’ll take it from you!”

How any mom could cry about five days of peace, five days every week with three hours at least, I do not have answers for such silly things.  For sobs and for tears over children with wings.

We guide and we teach and we love and we pray.  We kiss and we hug and we do it all day.  We clean and we wash, we sweep and we fold, we mothers keep house like it never gets old.  We do it all proudly, and we do it with love.  We do it–goodness knows–with help from above.

Now it’s time for Thing 1 and Thing 2 to grow up.  I’ll tie on their sneakers and wish them good luck.  Though I’ll walk them to class on the very first day, the next day it surely won’t happen that way.  I might get a hug with a cheek on my face, but quickly they’ll run–up the sidewalk they’ll race.  That big ole school will swallow them whole, then off I’ll drive, very slowly I’ll roll.  The tears will be flowing as onward I go.  My babies how quickly they managed to grow.

I’ll spend the ride home wiping tears from my face, using every last kleenex that’s found in the place.  Then quietly I’ll open the door of my house; not a child will be stirring, and there best be no mouse.  I’ll enter my home that once I could claim.  I claimed it to be my very own domain.  I gave it up for a while, and I’ll give it up yet, to two wild little monkeys with not a regret.

And then it will hit me.  This house is all mine.  From eight to eleven, I won’t hear a whine.  I’ll clean or I’ll work, or I’ll sit and drink tea, and I’ll do it alone, just the silence and me.  And then they’ll be gone–those tears on my face.  They’ll stop right in their tracks when I reclaim my space.  It will not last long, I’ll be racing the clock, but I’ll cheer and I’ll turn up the music and rock.  I might miss the ‘Movers with their catchy tunes, but that TV is mine, I can watch it till noon.  You know I won’t bother, if you know me at all, but the freedom is there if that TV show calls.

My kids will come back, and I’m so glad they will.  My Thing 1 and Thing 2, how I will miss them still.  They’ll come bearing homework, dirty clothes, hair and shoes, but I’ll grab them up quickly, my Things 1 and 2.  I’ll hug them so tightly they’ll beg I let go, then we’ll snack and we’ll play till the bath water flows.  We’ll brush and we’ll read and I’ll tuck them in bed, as the next day of school they will already dread.  Truthfullly, I probably will dread the day too, I love lazy mornings with Thing 1 and Thing 2.

School is here; summer’s gone with it’s leisurely pace.  I’m both happy and sad with big tears on my face.  Tomorrow is dreadful; tomorrow is grand.  I’ll have time for myself but have no little hands.  I don’t know what I’ll do when to college they go.  I want them with me, but I want them to grow.  I know at my side they will not always stand, but for now I will hold them as long as I can.

© 2009 Heather McKelvey • All Rights Reserved
Reprinting and electronic distribution by permission only