Spring Break is Hard to Take

gumwrapperIf Spring Break is any indication, I’m going to kill myself May 31st when school lets out for the summer.

I don’t ask for much. Like 5 seconds of no one screaming, pooping, fighting, hungering, bugging, touching, messing, wanting, needing, or demanding would be super.

I like my kids. I even enjoy them. I tolerate them much better than I tolerate other peoples’ kids, for sure. But something has got to give.

I find myself sneaking passed them because I know that if they see me they will ask me for a drink of water. It’s not that I mind getting them a drink of water. It’s not about the water! It’s that their urgent need for water doesn’t manifest itself until they see me. Additionally, it’s not like they can’t or don’t get their own water.
Being a mom is a pain. Everyone knows it. That is, essentially, why there is so much discussion of how amazing and important it is—because it sucks a lot and we need to psych ourselves up for it. It is exactly the opposite of being a famous actor. Being a famous actor is a pretty great job, right? And what do actors always say about acting? How hard it is. Teaching, on the other hand, is the same as motherhood—hard with low pay. And how do we talk about teaching? Like it’s a magnificent calling. See how it works?

I’ve been thinking lately about why I am sometimes so annoyed by my kids. I think it’s because I grew up with a working mom. It was fine and I was cared for. I have no complaints about that. But because I managed to make do on my own, sometimes the constant demands and attention requirements of my kids just make me think, “You’re kidding me, right?” It’s not even that I expect them to make their own meals, solve their own problems, or wipe their own bums. One of my kids has cried every day of Spring Break because she doesn’t know what to do. And I have planned fun things and plenty of structure along with down time. (I’m not some monster.) But I say, you get a day off from school you watch cartoons. Or read. Or go outside. Or paint your toenails. Or sit there and do nothing but revel in the fact that you don’t have to go to school. What is there to cry about? I’m thinking, “I don’t care what you do—that’s Spring Break.”

When I was a kid we did nothing and we liked it. In fact, we made things out of nothing. Like long, beautiful chains made out of used, discarded gum wrappers. What was the point of those gum-wrapper chains? There was no point. That’s the point.

Photo Source (and instructions for making a gum wrapper chain): Gracious Rain

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