There are all kinds of posts all over Facebook today by moms who are agonizing over sending their children back to school and who are missing them terribly now that Christmas break is over.
These posts make me feel guilty.
I adore my children. I really do. I love spending time with them. I love gathering them around me to read a story or play a game. I love the sound of their laughter and the beauty of their faces.
However, in reality, when all six kidlets are at home there is a LOT more fighting (Mooooom, he touched my...she ate my...he stole my...he's too loud...she's too close to me...etc. etc) and there are a LOT more messes (oh how I hate walking from a room I just cleaned only to find a mess in the next room, only to go back and find the same mess I just cleaned in the first room....aaargh!).
It usually takes the first couple days of having the kids back on track for me to catch up on all the extra necessary chores that haven't quite been the priority while we aim for family time.
Thankfully, the kids really love going to school (maybe they are glad to get a break from me too), so I don't have to feel too guilty about happily sending them back. I guess it is a win-win. They get to see their friends and eat lunches that don't include peanut butter and honey and have no one telling them to chew with their mouths closed or clean things up before they play a game. I get a little more quiet and a little time to reclaim my house before the after school rush starts again (no wonder TV execs invented after school specials back in my day).
I love these little people, I would gladly spend every waking moment with them. But (don't tell them) I quietly breathe a sigh of relief when they go back on track for school, even though I do miss them just a bit as well.