48 Hours Into Summer Break: A Report

Jun 14 2014

It’s 48 hours into summer break now. The toilet is clogged and the toilet paper dispenser has finally, after dangling by a thread for years, been ripped completely off the wall.

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and my kids have watched at least 36 cumulative hours of screens, played outside for 12, fussed for 8, been bored for 16 and also, nothing is fair. Nothing

It’s 48 hours into summer break , and I’ve done 7 loads of laundry which means only infinity left to go.

It’s 48 hours into summer break now, and there are sticks and rocks and sand and water on the floors inside my house. And one million Nerf bullets. And countless Goldfish refugees. And thousands of ramen noodle shards. And 9 discarded toast crusts. And 4 pairs of used undies. And that’s just in the family room.

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and I don’t know what’s for dinner. Probably something I forgot to defrost, Kids, just like always, ’cause not everything changes in the summer. 

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and we’ve begun our summer chore chart on a giant piece of poster board. So far, I’ve only had to argue with 3 out of 5 kids about chores, and only one of those has earned 7 extra jobs for being a total punky butt nugget about it. It’s OK, though. Don’t worry about a thing. In the next 48 hours, the remaining 2 kids will become punky butt nuggets, too, and 48 hours after that, I’ll realize it’s not worth my time or effort to maintain and the entire thing will fail utterly. We’ll be back to filth and squalor in no time, I swear. See: State of the Family Room for more information.

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and the calendar is filled to the brim with camps and appointments and get-togethers and go, Go, GO. How does this happen? Seriously. Every year. How??

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and I’m excited for the trips we’ve planned and the pictures we’ll take and the laughs we’ll have and fact that we won’t be late to one single school drop-off or miss any homework assignments ’til September. 

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and I feel a little breathless about how to spend time with my kids, and time with my friends, and time with my family, and time with my husband, and time with myself, all of whom have let me know recently – and kindly – that they feel kind of short-changed at what I can offer them. And they’re right. I can’t offer any of them all of what they need from me. Not even myself. 

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and I’m beginning to understand that releasing my feelings of inadequacy – of not-enoughness – isn’t a one-time or short-term event. It’s like learning to be healthy and learning to be free and learning to be unapologetically myself, a forever event that will take a lifetime to master. Like cleaning the family room and doing the laundry. It just goes on and on, you know? To infinity.

It’s 48 hours into summer break, and I know already it’s going to be a complete and utter mess, except when it’s magnificent. And mundane, except when it’s magical. And that we’ll fail and succeed and fail and succeed and fail again – at things and each other. And somehow, strangely, that’s OK this year. It is, I suspect more and more, what it means to be family and what it means to love one another. To be not enough sometimes. But to be not enough together. 

So, tell me… are you on school break? If so, how far in are you and what’s your report?