I’ve never been bungee jumping. My friend, who is also a teacher and mother, recently described to me what it’s like to bungee jump. She did it in Australia when she was free and wild and in her twenties.
You’re standing on the edge of the bungee platform, all prepared with safety gear in tact. You are storeys above the earth you see below. Deep breath. And then, you step off. The fall is steep and fast and drastic, and when you hit the end of the rope, you abruptly bounce around, up and down, side to side, violently and unpredictably, and anything can happen — you yell and scream and your throat hurts and the feeling of exhilaration takes over your body.
Back to school season is like the bungee jump, she said.
It sounds as though she’s right!
As organized parents, we prepare by shopping for kids’ clothes and supplies. We get the kids on a new bedtime routine a couple days in advance. We post the family calendar on the fridge and plan out some new lunch ideas. We stock the cupboards with staple items and granola bars, and we lay out the first day outfits.
And then that first day of school finally arrives (and we think we’re ready) — the kids are neat and tidy with their fresh haircuts and new shoes, outfits, and supplies — and they are off. A sigh of relief!
Suddenly we get whipped and snapped into the fast-paced chaos of routine and activities, curriculum nights, parent council meetings, team practices, and welcome back events. New hockey skates and dance shoes are needed, fast (forgot about those – “Mom, we grew again”)! And then there’s the school overnight trip to the outdoor education centre, the Terry Fox charity run, all those fundraiser forms that show up right away and all at once, and, “Mom, you need to fill out these 1000 forms”………
Then the bungee experience nears its end.
As September nears its end, and my family is settling in to school life and regular life, I ask: Are you sick yet? Anyone in your family have lice? Yet?