I am pretty sure that I have got it. I have never had it before but I have heard laments from friends when I was in elementary and high school describing their bout with it. I would nod and smile, attempt apathy with a shrug of my shoulders and mumble something to the effect of “yeah, school sucks.”
But it was a lie. I never thought that school sucked. I was the kid who shopped for school supplies at the beginning of July. I colour-coded all of my binders with neatly labeled dividers and between each section a healthy stack of fresh lined paper waited to be scribbled on.
By mid-July I wanted to get back to class. I wanted to be surrounded by my friends. I wanted to read the literary classic that was waiting to be discussed for English. I wanted to learn.
Years later I painstakingly set up my own classroom. An impressive library to entice my fifth grade readers, posters of famous Canadians tacked to the walls and the schedule for the day neatly written out on cue cards and displayed on the blackboard with the help of thin magnetic strips.
Never in all of those years did I feel the back to school blues.
This year is different. The overwhelming drop-offs and pick-ups scheduled between my three boys at two different schools have left me a sweaty mess. Scrambling around to get groceries and indoor shoes in the hour that I kiss goodbye to one and kiss hello to the others.
Meals are hastily thrown together and then inhaled at lightening speed to ensure we make it back to school in the forty-five minutes allotted for lunch and a half-sleeping toddler is dragged from his bed to make it in time to hear the last school bell of the day.
Wrestling dinner with homework and baths leaves me feeling depleted and exhausted while crawling into my own bed after reading Good Night Moon for the third time.
A quick search of the internet reveals that kids, thousand of them, suffer from back to school blues but there is not much to be found about parents dreading the return to the stressful monotony of the school routine.
The few articles that I did find wrote about mothers feeling sad, lonely and almost like an empty nester now that their school-age children are back in the confines of the classroom. The experts suggest relishing “me time” instead of “mom time” and not to feel guilty for enjoying the peace and quiet.
Me time? Peace and quiet? Guilty?!?
I wish I had the chance to feel guilty for some peace and quiet and “me” time. In fact, I would relish it but I am too busy rushing from home to school and back again to find much “me” time to feel guilty about.
How about you? Are you suffering from the back to school blues too?