Tuesday, September 04, 2012

My Kids are All in School and I'm Not Crying

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You know those moms who have all their kids in school and so you see them on the trail walking their dogs? Like two moms walking dogs and having a full-on conversation that is not broken into 15 parts? You know the moms you pass when you have your little ones halfway strapped in the double jogger while you do interval training because you have to stop every 4 seconds to pick up a dropped toy, mitigate an argument, hand over a new snack, wipe a nose, and answer a question about why the sky is blue?

I call those dog-walking moms Level Three Moms.
Here's my breakdown:
Level One Mom: You have little ones at home. All the time. No one is in school of any kind and a trip out of the house is kind of a hassle. Your house is always a disaster and you can often be found in  your jammies. All day long.
Level Two Mom: At least one of your kids is in school. So you get dressed and made up. Sometimes. Like when you have to go sign a kid into preschool or something.
Level Three Mom:  You have at least part of the day where all three kids are in some sort of school. And yes, juvenile hall counts.

Today I became a Level Three Mom. Jordis started preschool. Oh. My. Goodness. Because from what I read elsewhere on the Internet and on the Book de la Face I feel like I am supposed to cry and say "Where has the time gone?" But I know where the time has gone. It has been eight years of constant care and love and frustration and elation and dirty diapers and snotty noses and a million meals and talking back and hugs and rubbing aching legs in the middle of the night and playdates and milestones and homework and whining and meltdowns (of both mom and child) and singing and laughter and awesome child-picked outfits and birthdays and prayers and tears and reading and bribery and discipline and cuddles and excitement and . . .  and then some. It has been a wonderful and challenging season and a wonderful and challenging season is ahead of us. Yes, I will miss them when they are in school. But it's kinda cool, too.

It's only 2 1/2 hours of preschool in the middle of the day for four days a week for my little Jordy Bordy but I will be able to:
1. Volunteer in her class without having to make childcare arrangements for anyone.
2. Find Wolfie and Trader Joes all by myself.
3. Do yard duty at the big kids' school. Wearing a fanny pack and bright orange vest. Winning.
4. Walk our new pup on the trail without a stroller.
5. Go to lunch with my husband or a friend or my mom or another Level Three Mom.
6. Take a nap without having to put on a show for anyone.
7. Work on my speaking stuff.
8. Blog.
9. Spend time with God.
10. Clean the house without someone chasing me around uncleaning it.

Any other Level Three Moms out there who are not crying? And if you are a homeschool mom, you'll have to make your own level classifications. Not sure how that works.

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Heather @ Glitter and Gloss said...

I was totally the mom who BAWLED the whole week leading up to Leila starting kindergarten. I think I was slightly depressed, no joke. That girl is my sidekick, my mini me and my tiny bff. I don't think kids come much easier or sweeter than her.

Now, as for Coco....she starts preschool (two hours, twice a week) next Wednesday. I adore her just the same as I adore Leila, but she is the total opposite of her sister, and I will not be crying about dropping her off at school ;)

Melissa Avery said...

That's so awesome that your are a Level 3 mom, I'm at level 1 and hoping someday to be a Level 3, I long for that level!!

teal915 said...

I'm a homeschool mom, so I'll have to think about that. Glad you're enjoying this new season.

Becky said...

Loving this. I'm a level 3 mom, at least until March, when I'm back at home with a newbie. So you better believe these next six months I'M LIVING IT UP! Dude: we could meet, sans kids. Imagine it.

Starting K was hard for me, but mostly because it has been sort of hard for Maddie. Once she gets all her transition emotions worked through, I'll breathe a sigh of relief.

All that said, I am excited to have time to myself. I am a much better mom when I get a break and when my kids get a little break. We all love to get back together after a good break. :)

Anonymous said...

I'm a homeschool mom too. I'm not sure how the level would work out, but my in-laws come over twice a week to hang with my girls, so does that make me a level 2?

Erika said...

love this!!!! :-)

Claire @ My Devising said...

I'm currently a level one mom. When I think about what level three would be like, I get really excited. And then I feel bad. But now I feel good. :)

Jen@IntendtoLive said...

Love this. I'd say I'm a 2 1/2. I have one in preschool (nursery school is what they call it here in Scotland where we are living right now), and the other one, who is one and a half pretty much religiously takes a nap while the older one is at school. So, I can't go anywhere...but I CAN do ANYTHING else in the house that I want to. :)

Kristin said...

Love this! I recently became a Level 2 mom as my oldest started Kindergarten this year. It was a little sad to think that he's gone so much (and having to adjust to watching the school calendar - that's an adjustment!), but it's amazing how much simpler it is with just the two little ones. I can only imagine next year, when my 3 year old starts preschool....

(FYI, I guess I was technically level 2 last year when my oldest was in preschool, but those 2 hours flew by so quickly that they almost didn't help)

Kristen said...

Congratulations on making it to level 3! It sounds awesome.

Yesterday I became a level 2 1/2. My 3 year old started preschool 2 days a week from 9-2. And I put my 2 year old in MDO on those same days. So for 2 days a week, I have five.glorious.hours.all.to.myself. Yesterday for my first day of this new life, I met about 8 MOPS moms who also entered this lovely new stage with me at a bistro for a 2 hour coffee. Then I ran 1 errand, and then it was over. I'm hoping 5 hours goes by slower the rest of the year. ;)

Kelly said...

Ha ha I was going to say "Hey! At what level do you find us crazy homeschooling moms?" :) When school started this year and I knew so many of my friends had been upgraded to Level 3, I was a little jealous. And then I made the mistake of figuring out if we homeschool all our kids through high school, I still have 14 years to go! FOURTEEN! I'll be staring 50 smack in the face when I finally make it to Level 3. Good thing I love homeschooling because another 14 years sounds like an awfully long time! (seriously! 50!)

Sherry Siska said...

I guess I'm at level 13. My baby left me to go away to college this year and I am sad, sad, sad. I miss her (and her two older brothers) to pieces. The house is too clean, too quiet. Love the stage you're in, ladies. It flies by all too fast.

Rebekah said...

I wouldn't be crying either. In fact, since I'm a homeschooler, when my time comes I have a feeling I might jump up and down and cheer. Maybe even throw myself a party.

Knit and Purl Mama said...

I'm a level 3 mom... 2 kids in daycare and 1 kid in elementary school for some of the day. But the hours to myself? Cooking, cleaning, laundry, some work from home stuff... I never get time to myself and I wish I could take a nap! LOL.. Maybe one day.

Jaimie said...

So, I'm thinking there should be another level, because last year when my youngest was in preschool 3 mornings a week, I loved it! Today, he started full-day Kindergarten and I am a MESS. The switch from part-time to full-time school really threw me for a loop! Is this considered Level 4? Because I'm thinking the Level 4 moms might need some therapy! ;)

sandi said...

i am a level 3 mom with all three in school. the youngest started 1/2 day pre-k and she goes three days a week. long enough for me to get to the grocery store or meet a friend for breakfast. but she is still home with me two days so we can pal around at the zoo or library together. talk to me next year when they are all gone all day. i might need a dog! or a foster child! something.

sarah said...

i loved reading this blog. somehow you have a way of making the madness of a stay at homer's life (currently in level 2...with one on the way will probably be there for another 4-6 years) seem manageable. or at least normal. i love feeling related to. thanks wendy ;) congratulations on sticking out 8 YEARS while maintaining a Christ-centered home! inspiration!!

Missy at Its Almost Naptime said...

This is why we're friends.

Becky said...

Wendy, I miss you! I just reached level 3! Gav is in preschool twice a week for 2 1/2 hours. I walked out of his class after dropping him off the first day tear free yelling "Freedom" Braveheart style with hands raised towards the heavens in sweet relief. 5 amazing hours a week to myself. It's the first time I've had anything like it in seven years and I'm loving it. Glad I'm not the only one not crying here.