It is here! It is here! It is here! It is here!
No longer do I have to get up early in order to to cook breakfast and lunch at the same time.
No more do I have to dodge 16-year-old drivers in the school parking lot.
I can forget everything I relearned about figuring percentages.
No more ironing of school shirts! (Oh, who am I kidding …?)
Gone is the pressure to have a continual supply of homemade treats on hand. (Although, to be honest, I stopped baking cookies a couple of weeks ago and just started giving my son a handful of quarters to use in the snack machine in the school lunchroom.)
Now we can go to the dentist in the middle of the day!
It used to be so easy to entertain my two kids during the summer. We’d go to the library, to museums, to the movies. We’d make paper boats, do art projects, go out for ice cream several times a day. We’d go to the park and swing on the swings and slide the slides. We’d stay out in the yard until the fireflies came out.
Those summers are gone. The last time I said to my son, “Look, a firefly!” he replied, “Yeah … I saw one of those last week.”
These days, they sleep until noon.
The only place they want to go is the pool.
I want to go see “Maleficent.” My son refuses to go to any Disney movies. I want to go see “X-Men: Days of Future Past.” My daughter refuses to go to any comic-book movies.
Afternoons in the hammock with a stack of library books have been replaced by Summer Reading Assignments. “This pledge sheet should be read and signed by both a parent and the student. No form other than this form will be acceptable. The form must be turned in to your English teacher on the first day of school.”
The first book on my 13-year-old son’s suggested reading list is “Little Women.”
A great number of our carefree summer days will be filled with summer classes, volunteer service requirements and driver’s ed.
Yeah, I just said “driver’s ed,” two words heavy with the weight of severed apron strings.
Next year, they can drive themselves to the pool.