Back to Life. Back to reality?

I never understood why New Years Eve is celebrated in January. As I wistfully bid farewell to soft summer days and spin full-force into another season of edumication, activities and stickers on the calendar. I know September is the REAL New Year.

After tearing straight through elementary school, high school, University of Victoria then directly into another four years of actual teaching…one could say I was a ‘Pro’ at the first day of school thing. Twenty-two years in a row of giddy excitement from the smell of freshly sharpened pencils and new crayons! Zippidy-do-dah!

September of 1995 we relocated up North. I was voluminously pregnant and not employed. The first day of school arrived and…I was NOT invited. Wha-at???

Feeling a little  lot lost, I wandered around the house muttering to myself, searching in vain for a pencil sharpener or a random crayon. My utter dismay and lack of focus led to a beautifully restful day paddling around Tyhee Lake for several blissful hours. And I survived. Not a school supply in site.

Fast forward to yesterday. Whoosh! I was feeling off again. Wasn’t getting my usual happy-happy, joy-joyness about the onset of sweater season.

Just. Not. Feelin’. It.

Big “back-to-school” shop? Malls are busy, too much hype. They have enough clothes, over it.

School supplies? Got a few, recycled most, even got a big sister to do the labelling. ( If you knew me well, you’d ask if I was sick. I kinda have a painfully intimate relationship with my labeller…and every year I look forward to the mass sticker frenzy) Not this year.

Fortunately, I pulled myself together and captured the obligatory “Back to School” family photo. The offspring were mildly uncooperative, but we pulled it off. Way to go team!

Back to School

Excited for a new year of school.

Then the house was empty, way too quiet and there was not a damn canoe in sight.

Digital responses to the school photo bleeped at me all day. With family and friends spanning this and a few other countries. I appreciate being able to share our lives and keep in touch through social media. But I was still kinda grumpy as I kept going back and looking at the picture…wondering.

FIVE. That’s all, just five. There are only five siblings in that picture. We always joke in September about whether we are going to have an ‘even’ or an ‘odd’ year. Although our childrens’ ages span a decade, they all fell into the same “grade pattern”. So this year is ODD. Grades 11, 9, 5 and 3. Odder still is that one isn’t in school this Fall. He was sound asleep while this picture was being orchestrated, after working until the wee hours of that morning. His graduation hasn’t even made it into a post yet…maybe I’m just not ready to write about it, sharing it makes it a reality.

So there you have it. As much as I ache for change, I’m simply not ready for the transformation that is happening around here. No longer do we travel as a Tribe of Eight. We are being whittled away by jobs, friends, social events…it’s making me feel uncomfortable. An itch I simply can not scratch.

This morning, along with a phenomenal cup of coffee, I had a minor epiphany and a major change of heart. I watched as my blonde brigade made their own breakfasts, got dressed, helped each other with their hair and accessories, prepared their snacks, packed up their lunches and headed buoyantly out our door with a posse of friends to commence their day. It was a beautiful thing.

Change, although painful at times, schlepps some wondrous miracles along with it…doesn’t it?

Even though there are tears in my eyes as I look back at all those first days, I’m eagerly looking forward to all of the breathtaking firsts that are still to come.

Happy New Year ♥

Change always comes bearing gifts.  ~Price Pritchett

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Mom of six, social media translator at, travel junkie, wanna-be-chef and lover of all things clever and beautiful ...

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4 Comments on “Back to Life. Back to reality?”

  1. Irene Booth
    September 5, 2013 at 11:44 am #

    Great read Deidre. You nailed this one for all those moms out there. Change is difficult but what gets most of us through it, is knowing that there is more to come our way. LOVE reading your blogs. Thanks for sharing, and helping us all know we are not alone out there.

    • September 5, 2013 at 11:48 am #

      Thanks Irene…it’s so true. We aren’t alone, thankful for a community of wonderful people to share the challenges with 🙂

  2. September 5, 2013 at 12:54 pm #

    Your post makes perfect sense to me! I’ve been reflecting lately on how fall is when I typically get revved up and make my year’s resolutions. It comes, I think, from living my whole life on an academic calendar.

    • September 5, 2013 at 12:56 pm #

      We can start a revolution 😉 I was the opposite of revved up this year…but I feel a change coming on. I guess that’s a good thing!

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steps to the light

that perfect hand...

In Ocean's 11, Danny said that "the house always wins. If you play long enough, never change the stakes, then the house takes you. Unless, when that perfect hand comes along, you bet big... and then, you take the house." Here's the hand I've been dealt, sometimes it's risky and sometimes it's safe, but all the time... it's perfect. It's mine.

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