Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Back to School

One sure sign that summer has officially passed through (beyond the fact that yesterday was Labor Day) is that my daughter goes back to school today. No more mornings of sleeping in and waking up to a fancy breakfast. No more days of swimming, relaxing in her hammock on the porch, or playing video games. No more late lights with movies and board games. Now come the pressures of studying, frequent tests, homework, reading, and other school-related deadlines that seem to completely eliminate any trace of that lazy-day attitude and go-anywhere freedom that blissfully settles over her during the summer season. One of the things that we both like about summertime is that we get a bit more time. On our days together I typically leave work early and pick her up at lunch time. On school days, I don't pick her up until nearly 3:30 p.m. when she gets off her bus.

This year my daughter is a sophomore in her high school. Even though she has grumbled a little bit about school starting up again, I get the sense that this is just a pre-programmed response and that she doesn't mind it all that much. I think that she likes getting to be around her friends again and she looks forward to some of her school activities. While she would rather not have to spend her afternoons doing homework, she is more than used to this routine and she knows how to handle it.

In talking to some of my colleagues at work about back-to-school time, it seems that a fair number of them almost seem to be glad to be rid of their kids. Not me. I am blessed that my relationship with my daughter is such that I look forward to spending time with her and miss her when she is gone. I'm not sure if this will make any sense, but I am most like the me that I want to be when we are together. All of the crap and distractions that rumble about in my brain seem to be effectively quelled when we are doing our thing together. Still I look forward to helping my daughter in any way that she needs with her studies and her life in this new school year.