As much as I would give my right eye tooth to have kids still at home, I must say I was literally swelled with delight this past week when all of these facebook moms were posting back to school photos.

Then, I spotted Betsy Koke, Judy Mahtook and another mom in Judice Inn, with a gang of kids in tow, grabbing an afternoon snack.

Oh, how happy I was to not be greeting a school bus that afternoon, nor—more importantly—seeing any one off to school the next day.

Don’t get me wrong. I am one of the earliest of birds. I prefer to rise with the sun, enjoy some quiet and then pack in the people.  It was the no-options quality of the school morning that dragged me down. Get up, get moving, no turning back. Yes, I know. Part of going to school is learning a routine. But still.

I was never particularly happy to see the end of summer, either, as I know a gang of Fatima mothers were. On the first day of school, these gals headed straight to Hub City Diner for a celebratory breakfast. Maybe this particular party is a rite of passage for Fatima moms that eluded me because I was a public school mom, but probably not. I just didn’t want school to start and would not have been a fun fellow reveler.


Jackie Lyle's daughter and friends on graduation day. Lyle, whose children have all graduated and flown the coop, is one mom not missing back to school days.

There are some bright spots on my school morning memory, though, like the days when Candace would place azalea blossoms on the window ledge outside the kitchen door. The display was so sweet and I was happy that she—of our children, the one who was least enamored with school—could find a bit of beauty in the morning and that some tiny break in the off-to-school hurry inspired this gentle gift.

I did savor that sweet sense of success, knowing that the homemade, handmade, wholesome lunches that I packed for my kids were probably the most nutritious consumed by any of the parish’s 30,000 or so students.

I savor the value of education. Yet, I hated school and all of its restrictions. So, today and every day that the school bus passes my house, I can honestly say I am happy that my kids are grown because our school days are done.

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