Because tomorrow is the first day of school for both my kindergartner and my preschooler, you can probably just about imagine my state of mind at present. Unless you're a normal, well-adjusted person. In which case, I can inform you that my state of mind is chaotic and panicked and tear-drenched.
It's partly because I'm worrying about all the wrong things: my mind is occupied in a thousand different unproductive directions that are totally out of my control. From how we'll handle homework or social difficulties, to anxiety over the position of the baby (who is due to arrive in 7 weeks, give or take) and how that will affect my desired delivery, to how we'll handle two ballet lessons each week along with everything else that the new school-year and new baby require.
See? It's harrowing and daunting and mind-blowing.
At least it is for this mama.
(Oh -- one more thing: I feel like I need to get started on Halloween costumes RIGHT NOW, because our October is likely to be filled with all things baby and postpartum adjustment.)
But the truth is, if I'd just wipe the slate of my mind clean for a moment, I could focus on what actually needs to get done. And for today, the day before school starts, that's not a lot. I need to make sure my way-too-old daughters have their favorite dresses clean and ready for the morning. I need to get everything laid out for tomorrow's breakfast and lunch so we'll have plenty of time to bask in the excitement of school-day preparations without feeling rushed. I need to go to bed early.
And really, most of that is negotiable. Maybe the dresses are vital, because my girls are quite serious when it comes to choosing dresses. But the rest? We could be rushed. I could be tired. I hope for otherwise, but the day would still get accomplished if I had to scramble a bit.
The thing is, in all of this anxiety and worry and teary-eyed joy/fear, the day is passing me by. The chance to be with my girls fully in the moments that lead up to tomorrow morning is fleeting. We only have the afternoon now. And I want it to be fun. Sweet. Nothing necessarily memorable or huge, just calm and enjoyable.
Without my own doubts clouding the skies, the sun has a chance to break through and light up the smiles on my girls' faces. Without my winds of thought rushing around carelessly, the air can settle long enough that I may talk to my daughters about how they're feeling.
Tomorrow is not about me, as much as it feels that way right now. It is about them. It's about their growth and excitement, and probably just a smattering of their own fears.
I'm taking the afternoon off from mind-consuming circles of getting-nowhere contemplation. High five me if you dare; my hands will probably be sweaty with repressed emotion.
But tomorrow morning when they're both snugged away in new classrooms? I'll need your high-five to turn into a hug. Seriously.