Spring break is almost over.
I can feel the pull from school.
Not even a gentle tug, but more like that last ditch effort in a tug-of-war match when you yank with all of your might.
My daughter has been asking for a book. One that I own in my classroom. I’m not sure why I don’t want to buy this book when I just bought her several others that I already have shelved in my classroom, or even get it from the library where I’m sure it’s currently available. My mind was made up awhile ago that she could borrow this one from the classroom. Despite the numerous other books she has waiting for her to read at our house, she wants this one and she wants it NOW. She has been asking since we got back from our trip to go to the school and I had everyintention of taking her.
It was Wednesday when we drove back from my parent’s house. Despite the 3 hour ride, we decided to push it an extra 10 minutes and hit up the hair salon so my husband and son could get that haircut they desperately needed. No one needed the bathroom and they had eaten all of my food and snacks, so bellies were full. The app said there was no wait, so we went for it. The wait was minimal, the hair cut was decent, and the lollipop at the end was just what the doctor ordered.
Big N said, “Can we stop by your school to get the book?” I looked at the clock- it was dangerously close to dinner time and I didn’t want to resort to fast food if we added an extra trip.
“Not right now- we need to make dinner. Let’s get it tomorrow. I’ll write it down on our list.”
She was content for the moment, looking forward to the adventure that awaited her tomorrow.
The next morning I found myself sitting on the couch, staring at the basket of clean laundry waiting to be folded, the toys strewn about the floor and I suddenly had the strong desire to do that spring cleaning that HAD to happen before I went back to school. I got the kids (mostly) involved and we were deep in the thick of making a massive mess (you know the one that has to happen before the cleaning actually happens) when I got the text message asking for a play date. We needed the socialization and the fresh air. They wanted it to be outside so we wouldn’t have to deal with being embarrassed by the mess, so we accepted. There is nothing my kids love more than a play date.
“Let’s head outside to hang with our friends!” I said.
“YES! But what about going to your school?” Big N inquired.
“We can go after lunch. I’ve got a list.”
The list was growing now that I had to add “actually clean the large mess I created” to it. That’s the funny things about lists. Or my lists at least. I tend to do everything possible that is NOT on my list before I attend to those items. So then I add the new tasks to my list just so I can cross them off. It helps me feel accomplished.
We head outside and I crack open that book I’ve been waiting months to read. After all, “read for fun” was on my list.
The playdate was great- it went longer than expected and my book was really good. Lunch happened later than normal and the kids wanted a little “down time” before we attended to our errands. I was far enough into my book that I was having a hard time putting it down, so I thought we could wait 30 minutes before we ventured to school.
Thirty minutes can turn into 2 hours when you are in a good book. The main character was finally realizing she was torn between two love interests and it was going to get real messy- I HAD to know who she would pick. (Nothing too spicy- this is a pre-teen novel, but I was invested and had already picked a side). We found ourselves too close to dinner again, school would have to wait.
Friday became a repeat of Thursday – another play date, finishing my own book, plus it was snowing. The roads looked completely fine, but my brain had already decided that were staying in.
“Tomorrow morning,” I said.
It took all day of a complicated series of events that I realized I’m actually avoiding school. Like if I go there to get the book that I’m acknowledging my break is over and I need to get back to reality. My list was mostly school related things and I was just not ready to give more of my personal time away.
I’m finding that “balance” just really means more stress when I finally give myself the time to do the work that needs to be done. The work doesn’t shrink but my time to do it does.
We will go to school tomorrow. I owe her the book, and it will be the last day of our break. I’ll finally acknowledge that I have a list of things that need to get done and start tackling them. I’ll have one less hour to do it all- stinking daylight savings time. It’s like school is laughing at me for my procrastination.
At least I can cross off, “write my slice” from my list.
Truth be told, this might qualify as *multiple* slices. Lots going on here, showing how life events can quickly snowball.
I like that you found the underlying obstacle….going into school. I have been avoiding that also, even though there are things on my list that I need to take care of there, and telling myself I can “take my time” if I go over break. But I didn’t go.
I’m glad you did, if only for your daughter’s sake. 😉
I am really curious now about whether you actually go and get the book tomorrow. I too, feel the pull of school when I want to relax. Mine is just the normal pull right now though, since spring break is still a couple of weeks ahead of me.