Sunday, May 31, 2015

Accepting that THERE ARE NO BREAKS

Oh, sure, teachers have "vacations" and "time off."  NOT THE CASE.  A good teacher works at school, after school, at meetings, at home, in the car, in their dreams, during "breaks"...  It's taken me a while to try to separate work/home, and I think I've got a good balance, but, no, there are no breaks.

My hubby gets an earful of "this" meeting, or "that" test, or "these" grades, or "those" students.  My computer never truly sleeps as it searches for articles or video clips that will help students relate to the next unit.

What do teachers really do?  This video is clear: Teachers make it happen.

At home, THERE ARE NO BREAKS.  Children are big, ticking alarm clocks that go off at random times.

The plan was 2 kids, 2 years apart.  Ever since the oldest could walk, we noted their interests.  Now, at 8 and 6, they can handle up to 2 activities at a time. Those 4 activities sometimes fill 6 out of the 7 days of the week.  There was a good 4 weeks where our schedule went like this:

Monday--baseball game
Tuesday--baseball practice/rehearsal
Wednesday--basketball practice
Thursday--baseball game/rehearsal
Friday--baseball practice
Saturday--2 baseball games, basketball game, support cousins at their games, rehearsal




As we chugged along eating fast-food dinners, sleeping in until the last possible minute, adding miles to the cars, I realized that this busy life is THE life.  The life that we are choosing together.  We want to provide opportunities for the boys to discover their passions.  The above may look like over-kill, but these boys are enjoying every single minute.  School has not suffered, no stresses or tears (well, maybe the occasional whining), but overall, this is turning out to be a crazy, fun time.

Finding the balance between quantity and quality is a goal.  We want to make sure that they are learning sportsmanship, improving skills, building friendships, all the while not feeling like we're forcing them to.  We're lucky that we've come across some good coaches/directors who have similar values.  It really amazes us how these adults can have so much passion for their trade and it truly does make an impact on our boys.  So commendable that these people have families, jobs, responsibilities of their own, and take the time to help other kids be their best.

Through all this madness, how do we the parents keep our sanity?  Sneak away once in a while, of course.  An older couple with kids once gave this advice to a friend: take time as a family, as a couple, and sometimes by yourselves.

Up next...

Summer approaches, the rigid work hours and school bells pause, but life doesn't stop. 
Play will be supervised, meals will be prepared, rooms will be cleaned, writing/art/math will be practiced, camps will be planned, personalities will be shaped to bury "boys will be boys."

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