Well, it’s no longer “gonna be May!” It’s MAY! And this is potentially the most dangerous time to be me (or most teachers, honestly). It’s that May-gical time between Spring Break and Summer where that one week off gave me a taste of that sweet summertime, and now I’m on the countdown. But I’m not just counting down the
13 days, 6 hours, 32 minutes time until summer break; I’m counting down the time until summer ME.
Summer Me is a different human being. Summer Me is barely recognizable to my husband, kids, and even myself. She does things that Work Me wouldn’t dream of doing. Summer Me has balls (mainly sno-balls, but you also get the idea).
Summer Me says things that Work Me would find appalling. Here are just a few:
“Ice cream for dinner!”
Work me would never let this fly. No, ma’am. We have school in the morning, and the last thing we need is some rambunctiousness like this disturbing our routine. Those are empty calories you’re sending them to bed on! Where will this nonsense end? What’s next: Stay up as late as you want?!
“Stay up as late as you want.”
Over my dead body. We have a strict bedtime around these parts of 7:30, and no, I do not care that the sun is still up. School tomorrow means rest tonight! But Summer Me lets the kids read whatever they want, however late they want and even giggle and chat in the meantime. It’s memories!
“When was the last time they had a bath?”
Did they submerge fully into a pool? At least play in a hose? What day of the week is it, even? I know they took a shower before church on Sunday, and that was like two days ago …. Work Me has an impenetrable bedtime routine that begins with baths. During the school year, you’re bathing yourself on any day that ends in Y. During the summer, I’m more like “Meh. We played in the splash pad at the Y.”
Likewise, Work Me says a lot of things that Summer Me would probably respond to with “Aw, get the stick out of your ass!”
My poor kids. They probably get whiplash from how quickly I can slide so comfortably back into Summer Me. Actually, this transition isn’t the one they worry about. It’s the transition back into Work Me that has them concerned. Our household, which consists of two teachers as parents of four children, is always ready for summer mode. The kids know the expectations and roles now. Sure, you can play in a mud puddle all afternoon. Just drink from the hose if you’re thirsty, spray each other down when you’re done, and don’t track that stuff in the house.
Last night one of our boys walked in on me and my husband. No, it wasn’t anything explicit. We were watching a documentary on Netflix well after 9:30 and enjoying a Sonic blast. He could’ve gotten jealous. Instead, he saw it as the early signals of transition time. He also recognized that I didn’t get nearly as upset about his being up so late reading as I probably would in October. The transition is nearly complete.
Work Me NEEDS Summer Me. She brings balance and sanity. Summer Me is the person I long to be year-round. She’s the “Megan” to the otherwise “Mrs. Southall.” She’s exactly the persona I’d have year-round if it weren’t for having to raise these kids right! But with fewer demands and responsibilities during that fleeting season of summer, she’s exactly the person I get to be at least part-time.
And I welcome her back with open arms (from the couch)!