Summer vacation used to be a time of butterflies and fireflies; lazy days and sticky strawberry faces; swimming, swinging, summer camps and summer loves. That was all when I was a kid.
Now it’s a time devised by demons. A time of fighting and whining; long days and sticky hands on my walls; boredom, mess making, public tantrums, itchy mosquito bites that are apparently the worst thing any human has ever endured, sunscreen in eyes, begging and constant unfairness.
My kids wake up early and whiny. They’re hot. They are bothered by yesterday’s skinned knees and bug bites. They fight over EVERY FUCKING THING. They’re bored. So bored.
I’m bored too. Staying home all day with these little monsters is totally boring. But the alternative is taking them places. And they’re monsters. They’re monsters at the splash park. They’re monsters at the library. They’re monsters strawberry picking. They’re monsters at the movies, the river, the playground, the pool. But mostly they are monsters at the supermarket, a place I need to visit with some frequency since they are also voracious piglets.
What crazy devil devised summer vacation anyway? Do children really need a two and a half month break? What about us, the parents? Why are we subject to this evil scheme? What wrongs have we committed in some past or present life requiring us to endure endless hours of suffering as penance?
Go ahead and remind me that I should cherish these days. Go on. Tell me to my face.
Go ahead and remind me that summer vacation is a time for memory making and family togetherness.
Go ahead and remind me that all too soon my children will be grown. Or worse, teenagers! Remind me that they’ll change from not leaving me alone for a minute to not wanting anything at all to do with me. Tell me how much I’ll miss these days, how much I’ll pine for all their attention and affection.
What’s really great about hearing all of those things is that it makes me feel bad. What’s really awesome about feeling bad is that I’m already miserable because of this godforsaken summer vacation. Now I have the ultimate Mom’s Emotional Cocktail: