A couple of days into the new year, it hit me like a ton of bricks. 2018 is going to be a big year for our little family. My 5-year-old daughter will start kindergarten this fall, and my 2.5-year-old (who turns 3 this summer) will start his first year in preschool. Change is on the horizon, and although August feels decades away, I know it will be here in a flash.
Life as we have known it for the past 5+ years is going to be a thing of the past.
Right now, our schedule is pretty loose. I do the majority of my part-time work from home, my daughter attends preschool three days a week, and we rarely have to be out of the house before 8:45 in the morning. Soon life will revolve around setting alarms, packing lunches, helping with homework, and sticking to a much tighter schedule.
I’ve gotten very comfortable in the non-routine that comes with my role as a mostly stay-at-home parent. Right now, the kids and I enjoy lots of mid-week excursions: Museums, the zoo, the trampoline park. I purposely plan most of these outings when the places we visit will be the least busy. Soon we’ll join the ranks of the weekend warriors, and the school break adventurers.
Before I had kids, I had never planned–or expected–to be a stay-at-home parent. My parents both worked full time, and I had no desire to break the mold. Then my daughter came along, and everything changed. Our family has sacrificed a lot in order for me to stay at home, working only a few hours a week, but I wouldn’t change the experience for anything.
As I count down the months until things change, I’m determined to soak up the rest of this special time.
We’ll go to the science museum and wander aimlessly, playing in the water table for 30+ minutes before moving on to the next exhibit. We’ll go to the zoo for a mid-week picnic, and we’ll take our time and enjoy our surroundings. We’ll do as many mid-morning library story times as we can manage. We’ll spend afternoons at home, relaxing, watching movies, and playing games together.
I have spent the past month touring and researching schools, putting in applications for transfers and charter schools. It’s surreal to be at this point–preparing to send our first-born off to kindergarten. Even as I’m in the midst of it, I can’t believe it’s happening! As strange as it may be to consider how different our lives will become in just a few short months, I’m ready to embrace this change. Bring on this new season in my journey through motherhood!