Monday, July 27, 2009

Back to School, Back to School...

Abby and Alex this morning
first day of 1st grade and 6th grade, respectively

The two youngest kids go back to school today. I know, I know, it isn't even August yet. Most kids are only halfway through their summer break.

For my children, it's different. Here in Hawaii, or at least on the side of the island that we live on, school is year-round. So my kids go 8 weeks on, 3 weeks off, with 2 weeks at Christmas and 5 weeks for summer.

It was weird at first, but now we've gotten used to it and everything's OK. It's sort of better this way. They barely have time to get restless here at home, and then school starts up again. It's easier to get back into a school and bedtime routine, because they didn't have 11 weeks to get that out of their system.

It doesn't make me miss them less, though.

Today, of course, I teared up a little when I dropped Abby off, and then again when I dropped Alex off. Alex started middle school today, a whole new world. I knew she was a little nervous, but today at breakfast she was as calm as a cucumber, and she walked calmly to her first class. I know she'll be fine, and find her friends right away, and get down to business.

But part of me aches that these kids are growing so fast.

I saw a commercial yesterday for Wal-mart. A mom was taking her freshman to college, and she helped her get her drab dorm room all spiced up with bedding and other items from Wal-mart. The mom (in narration) said something like, "I don't want to let her go, but I know I've given her everything she needs to get started..."

The mom meant she gave her items from Wal-mart, but I heard the hidden meaning, too. I said out loud, to no one in particular, "That'll be me in 3 years." Neither Jon or Alissa looked up to see what I was talking about. I have no idea how I will walk away and leave her, even if she's at our Alma Mater (yay!). And that's 3 years down the road. Heck, I can barely leave my 1st grader and walk away, when I know I'll see her again in 6 hours!

Yes, I am a baby. A mess. Worrying about things that are not important right now. But it's in the back of my mind every single day. Every day.

And now, with the new school year starting, time for college is even closer. Alissa is a 10th grader!! How can that be?

My heart is missing Ohio today. It stinks being so far from home. My sister's baby shower is this weekend, and I can't be there. Laurie, I sent you a gift to be opened at the shower. Please write me and let me know how you like it. Everyone else, I'll post a picture after the shower. I am so, so proud of this particular gift, but I don't want to spoil the surprise...

We're missing a lot, being in Hawaii. Yes, it's Hawaii and the weather is nice. But I know that life is moving on without us back home, and we can't come back for a long weekend like we could in Tennessee. When it's time to move, I'll be ready.

We won't know our future for another 6 months or so, but if we can move to anywhere on the mainland, it will make me happy. Truthfully, I don't care where the next duty station is anymore. As long as we're on the mainland, we'll be closer to home.

Home. "The place where I belong..." as sung by Chris Daughtry. I don't regret the life we've chosen, or the places we've been. But with new life entering the family, I feel further away from home than ever before.

I'll be home soon (for a visit), Ohio family and friends. 11 months and counting...

Happy Monday!


Anonymous said...

Tiff-I'm sorry too that you can't be there this weekend...we'll all take lots of pics and post them for you. I'm a big baby about the kids growing up, too. Today they were all driving me nuts, but then my mom says "Soon they'll all be in school." and I she's right. Zeke will be in kindergarten this year and I'll be home all alone. What will I do with myself then? Smile:) We're all in the same boat in some ways. Talk to you later-Sarah

RangersGirl said...

sending you a big electronic hug.

I can't believe all your girls are so big and grown up already.

Krysti said...

Having been to visit and having a much better perspective on how far away paradise is...I get it.

Time waits for none of us and we must do the best we can.

Our children are growing! They are active, healthy, fiesty, and energetic girls. It's all good... but it is not easy! :)

I know the baby shower gift will be perfect! I got a sneak peak! :)

You are over the half way point in this tour and you will look back on it and thank God for the rewards, the friends, the blessings, and laugh at the trials and tribulations!

After all only the moms understand the joys of the hula and why the young kids are cute and good at it... and we command laughter every time! :)

Thinking of you! Smile girl! The sunshine is bright and the clouds few! You will be back on the mainland before you know it!

Love, Jackie

LaurieG said...

I miss you too! More than you ever know. I was secretly wishing you were going to show up on my doorstep friday night but I know you can't. I was at Shari's today and she would not let me anywhere near the box, so it will remain a secret, although it is killing me! I love you guys so much and we will call you Saturday!