Here are 5 things (almost) every mom needs to hear as we send our kids back to school.
1. You aren’t the only one struggling.
Misery loves company. Do I wish for my mom peers to struggle? Noooooo. But, do I find comfort in the fact that I’m not the only one who sets the alarm to go off appropriately 58 times before I drag myself outta bed before 6 am five days a week? Well, hell yes. I also find comfort in knowing that I’m not the only mom who has walked her kid into school wearing two mismatched shoes and switched the kids’ lunchboxes twice in one week. I’ll never live it down. Imagine. Having to eat your sister’s Uncrustable when you specifically asked for a ham and cheese Lunchable? Throws the whole family off-kilter. Back to school. It’s a struggle.
Just because the kids are back at school for a huge bulk of the day doesn’t mean that you have to get all the things done that you never got done over the summer because ….well, because…. “Mommy, Mommy, Mommy.” The laundry can wait another day, skip the grocery store and order some H‑E‑B delivery, and why clean the house just for it to turn into a complete disaster again once the kids are home from school?
Kick your feet up and dig into your hidden stash of peanut m&ms in the wide-open comfort of your own living room. Turn on some trashy reality tv, book a pedi, do some online shopping in peace, do some reading! May I recommend the comment section of your local news station’s Facebook page? And, yes, I’m well aware that my idea of self-care might not be the same as yours, but whatevs. You do you. Just make sure while you are doing you that you permit yourself to throw some things in there that brings you all the joy!
3. Let go of the Mom Guilt!
Newsflash! It weighs you down. This is actually something to remember all year long! But, we mamas are wired to feel guilty about EVERYTHING. And, back to school brings out the best of all the regrets and ways for us to second guess ourselves. It’s ok if you sent your munchkins off to school with a belly full of lucky charms and chocolate chip muffins.
Ya fed them? Right? Lose the guilt. It’s ok if you forgot class picture day and you sent little Johnny to school in a Space Jam t-shirt with a chocolate stain on it. You’ll laugh about it later. Lose the guilt. It’s OK if your preschooler knows a four-letter word that he may or may not have heard from you, and he proceeds to say said word during the show and tell on things that start with F week. At least he’s expressive. Lose the Fu…. Ahem. Lose the guilt.
4. Other parents’ decisions do not need to dictate yours.
So what if Sophie has a phone in first grade when you have a strict no-phone rule until your kids are at least twenty-five. So what if Jayden has no bedtime and stays up till 10 playing Roblox when you like your munchkins tucked in by 8… at the latest. So what if the Percy twins come to school donning the latest brand names from head to toe and eat lunches of organic hummus wraps and mini charcuterie boards while your babes are dressed in Cat and Jack and are eating a sandwich out of a package? So what? Only you know what’s good for your family and your kids. And, besides …. I really, really, really like Cat & Jack. If only they made their cute little sequin shirts for moms.
5. You don’t have to arrive at the school pick-up line two and a half hours before school gets out.