Random Bits of Summer
I’m struggling with a bit of summer burn-out these days. There is nothing wrong. The kids are great. Work is great. Home is great. But . . . days are long, the temps are hot-hot-hot, and energy and motivation are waning. For the first time ever in my whole entire life it feels like maybe, just maybe, summer break is a bit too long. Never in my days of being a student or a teacher would I ever have dreamed I might one day utter those blasphemous words with such sincerity. And most likely – it may be as soon as early winter or as late as spring – I will desperately miss the flexibility of unscheduled summer time. Then you can hit me up with the old “I told you so!” Right now, however, a schedule is sounding pretty good.
In the meantime, here are a few mid-summer thoughts in short form (which is all I can muster at the moment) that I can share:
* I remain forever grateful to the chemists, researchers, and physicians who have made medical treatment of ADHD possible. Gus is doing so well since we readjusted his medicine at the beginning of the summer. He was a couple of hours delayed in taking his meds on Monday. Watching him deal with the excess energy, the untamed thought processes, the struggle to control impulses when control is almost out of reach, and the almost twitchy nervousness is like watching someone on caffeine overload in a room lit only by a strobe light trying to sit still on a two-legged stool. Crazy-making.
* Mia will turn nine the day before she starts fourth grade. She is always the youngest in her class. (And usually the shortest.) Fourth grade sounds so old to me, yet she’s still my baby girl. I have, however, noticed a change in her this summer – one that is both amusing and annoying. She is getting a bit air-headed! She forgets things. She’s much, much worse than she’s ever been about leaving her stuff scattered everywhere. You can recreate her day by following her path of her stuff through the house – like following a trail of bread crumbs. I can ask her to go get the stuff she left in the bathroom (a book, a Webkins, hair bows, dirty clothes, etc.) and she will go to retrieve them. She may even pick her stuff up. Then she spots the mirror, or the brush, or nail polish and starts primping, forgetting what she came in for in the first place. Once her hair is fixed or fingernails painted, she’ll leave the room – and leave whatever it was I sent her in to retrieve. I remember Anna doing this too, only she was at least two years older when she did it. I think the tweens will arrive early with this one. Sigh.
* I got a brief reprieve this morning when my friend Cathy offered to keep the kids so I could get my hair cut and, um, “conditioned.” (It’s amazing how the summer sun brings out those gray highlights! I’m sure it has nothing to do with my age or any stress.) I drove across town alone, feeling like I was cutting class or something. I flipped the radio to NPR – a station I never get to listen to with the kids in the car with me (and the kids are always in the car with me this summer) because (a) they hate it, and (b) Gus tends to fixate on news stories to a degree that is not healthy. Then I got to sit awhile, the object of Kasey’s full attention (and awesome scalp massage), and completely relax. It was decadent!
* While I’ve been quiet on the blog for a few days, I’ve not abandoned writing. Last night I handwrote over 10 pages in my journal, fleshing out a couple of ideas for longer projects. I’m excited about the prospect of developing either/both. Interestingly enough, the seed for one project came from a dream my dad had in which I’d written a novel. An article I found in a Twitter link this week provided some additional inspiration that fit with the bits of the dream he could remember. That, combined with an experience a colleague had over the weekend and a blog war I followed last week, gave me more ideas for the story. I have a few bones to the skeleton. I plan to dig to see if I can find a few more. Wish me luck!
* There’s nothing like playing tourist in your own town, especially when you are able to go places that cost little or nothing to enjoy. Sunday afternoon we revisited the Angel Oak – a magical place if there ever was one. Then we drove a little further out to the Charleston Tea Plantation, the only place in North America where tea is grown. American Classic tea is one of my favorites to warm up to in the winter. We didn’t get to do the trolley tour of the whole plantation, but we did do a factory tour. To think I’ve been drinking tea my whole life and knew so little about it! We’re so fortunate to live in such a beautiful place. My only disappointment was missing an opportunity to get some juicy Johns Island tomatoes before coming home. Next time!