Labor Day

Published Date: September 1st, 2008
Category: Weekly Thought


It’s 2:30 in the morning and I wake with a start, unable to go back to sleep. Is it my scratchy throat that is keeping me up?




My worry that G is a bit constipated and that I might have to give him his first “enema?”




But the more I think about it, I realize what has woken me up from a deep sleep is simple enough.


It is Labor Day. My magic summer with the boy is now over.


I can pretend that the fact that he starts preschool in less than 24 hours is not a big deal. That it is no different from when he went to daycare three days a week. That in fact, it is even better since he will only be going to preschool 2 days a week.


But the fact of the matter is that I made a list of all our summer fun things to do and now, they are all crossed off. When I started this endeavor four months ago in early May, quitting my job to stay home with my boy for “the summer” seemed like such a lark, like something that would last forever. And it will last forever in our memories and in his “journal” that we kept all summer, drawing pictures and writing down all the fun things we did in a simple composition book.


The secret is that when I take his picture on Tuesday, dressed in his little shorts and baseball hat, backpack jauntily thrown over his shoulder, and then drop him off at school, I will momentarily cry in the car. I might have my moment and drink a cup of coffee at the beach, or sit on my front porch in silent defiance of the summer coming to the end. But then I don’t know what I will do. I did not think this far ahead (for once in my life).


I will now have two days a week, 16 hours of my life with no purpose, nothing to do. Will I fill it up with random errands like going to the gym, the grocery store, the drycleaner, Target? Will I fill it with acts of kindness for others and perhaps volunteer with unwanted children, homeless mothers, unwashed animals? Will I actually work on my resume for the first time in seven years and find some part-time work?


Or will I just sit there and be depressed, be so desolate that my four months that I thought was going to last forever is now over? Will I sit mutely for a week in wonderment that four months and soon four years will have gone by so fleetingly quickly that it seems like just yesterday that I was worrying about what to do with a constipated three-month old and today I am worrying what to do with a constipated three-year-old?


I know I will.


But hopefully after my week of silence, of my secret sitting on the couch and watching hours upon hours of “Legends of the Fall” (it is always on cable, somewhere, when you need it), I will wake from my silence, look about my world, and find myself again.




This entry was posted on Monday, September 1st, 2008 at 1:43 am and is filed under Weekly Thought. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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