Every time school lets out for the summer, I feel the same way. My heart fills with elation. The kids are home! I want this summer to be a summer to remember. I want it to be epic, filled with adventure, fun and laughter. I picture the kids goofing off outside, eating popsicles, frolicking in the ocean’s waves, camping out in the front yard under the stars.
Friends, most of our summers turn out much. much less epic than these glorified images of fun in the sun.
In fact, I hear a lot of, “I’m bored!” From Ruby: “Are we going anywhere today?” If I respond in the negative, a heavy sigh escapes her tiny body. She is a people person. From Zac: “Do I have to get dressed today? Why? We’re not going anywhere.” Then, heavy sigh from Mom.
I don’t think the kids experience nearly as much disappointment about lackluster summers as I do. Not that I have incredibly memorable summers from my own childhood to compare them to. In grade school, my brother and I lived with Mom. Mom worked full-time. During the summer, we went to daycare all day. We did fun stuff, like heading to a community pool. We sewed pillows. Lots of pillows. Again, not sure why. We took urban hikes. We played a lot.
I guess I just want them to get the most out of summer and the freedom it brings. To quote Thoreau:
“… to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life”…
Now that I’m well into adulthood, I know how fleeting those years of carefree times truly are. Life is finite. Unfortunately, feeling this pressure to capitalize on every moment makes me a little anxious. I don’t enjoy what is because I see, in my mind’s eye, what could be. I need to let that go and be happy now, choose gratitude for this time with the kids. Soon enough they’ll be grown and on their own.
Since we have no huge plans for this season, I want to pick up adventures as they come. We’ll plan a few outings. We’ll still do the regular stuff like laundry and shopping. But along the way, we’ll find big and small ways to suck out the summer’s sweetest nectar.