Back To School

The kids are all back to school today. Hurray I hear beleaguered mothers all over WordPress cheer. No more bored teenagers skulking around the house, no more playing the role of a police officer/boxing referee separating squabbling siblings; and no more endless board games that nobody ever wins because we suddenly realise that none of us are that good at general knowledge.

Fionnuala’s morning routine is a slightly chaotic, but highly oiled machine. Once the alarm hits six am she ‘bounds’ out of bed to begin the multitude of tasks she has to perform in order to get three disorganised kids and an even more disorganised husband out of the house. Lunches are made, uniforms are set out and breakfasts prepared. All with a cheery smile and a happy heart.

Ok, I may have made that last bit up.

Adam resembles a Walking Dead extra first thing in the morning, only less lively. He shuffles around, with a glazed expression, intermittently grunting in response to questions. I know he will be alright, however. Despite his best attempts to convey the contrary, he actually has a brain between his ears. And throw him a rugby call and he will suddenly burst into action.

Hannah is no lover of school and would much rather spend her morning under the covers watching Shawn Mendes videos on You Tube. She also has a genuine head cold but her evil parents showed little mercy and chucked her out of the door anyway. She left in good spirits though, and I reckon she’s secretly looking forward to getting caught up with all her friends.

Rebeca is the polar opposite. She started at junior high school last week and has been counting down the hours over the weekend for Monday morning to come around again. There isn’t a nerve in her body and it’s so refreshing to see. When I was her age I was a blubbering mess when I started at grammar school. I’m glad the kids haven’t inherited my anxious nature when it comes to new challenges.

The same old routine can be a grind at times. It’s hard work getting up day after day to perform the same chores and go to the same places as we did yesterday. It can be boring, dull and repetitive. We yearn for a change, something new and fresh to add a dash of colour to proceedings. To make us feel more human as opposed to hopeless hamsters hammering away on a wheel that never takes us anywhere.

There is magic in the mundane, however. Where would we be without it. Imagine waking up with no reason to get out of bed; wandering around a house without the noise and clamour. We would be lost and bereft without our loved ones, those who we take for granted. We need routines as much as we need the air we breathe. Life would be meaningless without it and without them.

So no matter where you are this Monday morning, no doubt muttering and moaning about something or other. Be grateful for what we normally take for granted. There is much to be thankful for, no matter how bleak your situation might appear. It might not seem that way, but believe me, the alternative is not worth thinking about. Embrace the mundane for it might just save your life.

What have you to be grateful for today?

How manic are your Monday mornings?

40 thoughts on “Back To School

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  1. My days start at 4 a.m. feeding the cats and drinking coffee so I can be part of the land of the living. Then I get my daughter up at 6, and at 715 she’s on the bus. She hated school. Always has. However, the nightmare that is my daughter is better than it used to be. She used to fight.like crazy from kindergarten to 4th grade. She’s. better now. Largely because she has friends and she’s in middle school.

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      1. I go to bed at 10 p.m. I naturally wake up with the cats at 4. I used to go back to sleep but then id feel like garbage after. So I just stay up and take a nap in the middle of the day.

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  2. I would be adrift without routine! My mornings are so predictable it’s almost bizarre. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way. It relieves that anxiety I wake with, giving me comfort from knowing exactly what I need to do when and for how long.

    Your family’s morning (organized) chaos sounds wonderful 😊

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    1. Your kids look delightful!
      Speaking of chaos, our Tennessee grandson went back to school August 8, and the Michigan kids go back tomorrow, this being Labor Day here. Others went back somewhere in between.
      Your description of having nothing to get up for sounds like my expectations of retirement and the empty nest, but it’s been anything but, thank God. Sadly, a lot of the morning routine centers around health (supplements, physical therapy, etc.) But it all works, so I am grateful every day for what I’ve been through and survived quite well. We do still have one “child,” Mr. Hollywood (named by our daughter, who allegedly owns him, and the highlight of my morning is walking him, as I get to experience the beauty around me (lake, woods, pier) and connect with God. This makes the rest of the day busy but not chaotic, meaningful but not stressful. Blessings to you and your amazing family.

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  3. I’m a walking zombie in the mornings too! I remember those mornings with my two. I made them pick out their clothes the night before and had to ban TV before school because it would slow them way down. 🙂

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      1. Actually, not really…. I was only consistent re the telly. I am such a zombie in the morning I would have to set boundaries so I didn’t get too loud…. My son is like me and getting him out of bed was the hardest thing to do for the 13 years of school. And I was working a lot of those years and left about the same time they did.

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  4. My kids are all pissed because last year I homeschooled them. With the exception of my middle child who wanted to attend school, they are annoyed about having to be shuffled around into tiny boxes with hard chairs and be told what to think at 8:30 am. Even the middle one still is anxious. But me? I’m a mix of anxiety, sadness, and relief. No more school planning or listening to complaints or fighting with the boy to do his work. Nope. The teachers can deal with it now. They’ll all have to get with the program or suffer. And I am a bit sad in the empty sounding house but I’ll have to adjust too. Hopefully we all survive the week.

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  5. Aw! Look at your cute, little (big) hybrids! ❤
    I loved your description of Adam's waking. 😀 My pre-teen is just like that, though even less animated. I often have to prise his blankets and pillow from his warm, comfortable fingers.

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  6. Your kids are so adorable!! Love this shot! I was one of those nerdy kids who LOVED going back to school. Learning new things, catching up with friends, just the smell of the newness of the books and the school supplies. I always get a bit giddy this time of year remembering the past.

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  7. Handsome kiddos! You are right about the mundane getting old, but then when life gets too chaotic, you can’t wait for the routine, boring days again. We started back to homeschooling today. It was nice to have my kids attention again after losing them to their games for days at a time over the summer. My son said he missed our conversations. So did I!

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  8. Mondays are manic but we normally get there early, it’s then downhill from there onwards 😄
    Yes repetitive routine can get boring but the summer holidays always remind me how we flounder without it.

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