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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Back to School

It's Baaaaack!

Parting is such sweet sorrow.  Many emotions including memories come to mind this time of year.  I remember that I hated leaving the comfort of my home and the side of my mother to go to school for the whole day.  My parents were decently well of financially and so it is that I was enrolled in private school at the tender age of four.

A few days into the school year I finally became comfortable around my school mates and teachers.  So much so that by the end of the day, I almost hated to leave their company.  There again the minute I see my mother, I would forget the school friendships and teachers, and so went the early grades.  Having experienced parenthood since then, I now understand that this coming and going activity actually was for my own good, and actually pained my mother much more than it did me.
As the grades progressed you actually became not only smarter but prouder about all the things you were learning, and being able to understand so much about the world we lived in.  In short order we advanced into sports and other competitions such as Spelling Bees, and School Debates.  Accumulating Blue Ribbons, and certificates of accomplishment, and general recognition including lettering in sports.

The last half of junior high, or middle school as it is now known, you develop and interest in the opposite sex.  For sure this made summer break that much more difficult.  Not being able to see your special person of interest every day for the duration of summer.  However, because you did have a telephone number or email (now) your summer was bearable.  Besides you’ve heard the old saying about how “absence makes the heart grow.)  Unfortunately, education (classes) takes a backseat to the relationship that has grown during the summer with minimal distractions from school mates or classes.

End of summer and back to school, as the weeks and days grow closer you actually begin to feel a nervous stomach, but like everything else you get over it.  Your parents without letting you know, are actually happy that you will be going back to school and kept busy and supervised by someone other than them. This routine goes on year after year, and for some of us school becomes more fun than challenge. We begin to plan for college, and the possibility that our person of interest will attend the same college or maybe not.

Fast forward many years later:  we have gone past the stage of being the parent and raising our children through the same educational process.  Now we help do it all over again, only now as grandparents.  I have had grandchildren graduate from the university but the early preschool and kindergarten never gets old.  It continuous to be a challenge both physical and emotional.

When the school year was ending last spring, I remember dreading having to adjust my schedule from dropping them off at school and picking them after school intermittently (because their parents also took turns) to being Grandpa full time Activity Director for the summer. Now, however, I am only days away from having the majority of the days to myself once again until summer break.  I must confess, it’s not a great feeling.  I will miss all the company that I’ve had for almost 3 months.  The development of the little minds that I experienced firsthand answering their barrage of question about anything and everything.  The requests for a special meal for lunch, or a special trip to buy yogurt or ice cream at some drive-up window, even though the freezer is well supplied.  Maybe a couple of hours at the local park or an hour going for a bike ride, something is always happening.  As the saying goes never a dull moment.

I know that I am blessed, but I can only hope that the blessing will include watching them celebrate their university graduation, and even seeing them get married.  For now I’m not sure that I am ready for a world that has only adults for most of the day.  I am ready for missing the running around the house, and the questions about what are we having for lunch?  The beauty of the whole experience among other highlights is when my 5 year old granddaughter tells me that I am “the greatest cooker in the world.” She adds that I should go on television on the Chef Shows because I would win for sure.  When I ask her what my TV name should be, she quickly responds, “Chef Grandpa.”  I’m sure that I am not the only one that goes through these emotions, but I do know that the best is yet to come…….

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