Wednesday is the first day of our school year here and the first day of school is widely known by parents as the "Happiest Day of the Year." It beats Christmas in some households.
My daughter will be in 5th grade and my son in 2nd. Since my daughter attended preschool, we have had the first day of school for 7 years now. Every other year I have rejoiced along with all parents at the coming of the new school year. My children, like all other children on Earth, spend their summers playing outside, arguing, sleeping in, bugging each other, eating Popsicles, driving each other crazy, swimming, annoying the living daylights out of each other, riding bikes and, did I mention arguing?
This summer was no different and there were many days where the children were sent to their rooms so that I could survive without throttling both of them. They are generally good kids and other people (including their grandparents) think they are perfect little angels (they are all brainwashed). Even though they are very close, they still take great delight in driving each other crazy. Which is why, I celebrate the first day of school just like every other parent in town.
Except this year.
I'm dreading it. It's not the getting up early (though, really, does school have to start so stinking early for goodness sakes?!). It's not the homework or the schedules or the bazillion papers that come home on a daily basis.
I'm dreading the first day of school because I have cancer.
This year, I'm not so anxious to send my babies off for the whole day. I want to treasure these moments. I want to be around them and just know they are here. I want to talk to them any time of the day and laugh at their little jokes and silliness. I just simply want to be around them. And I want them around me.
It's not that I didn't want to be in their presence in year's past. It's just that it didn't seem so urgent. So pressing. There would always be another summer. There would always be another day.
Having cancer means you might run out of summers before you would like. And, though, hopefully I have a lot more summers in me, I guess no one can be sure.
That's why I'd like this summer to last far longer than it will.
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