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The Fear of Summer: Romancing the Routine

mom, I spy your routine!

Summer evokes a mild case of panic in me.

Oh, sure, there’s the good stuff. Long, sunny days. Outdoor swimming pools. Vacation plans. Quality time with the kiddo. But if I learned anything in all my years of schooling, it’s that summer is synonymous with the loss of routine.

I was one of those strange children who didn’t like weekends. More at home with the rhythm and clear expectations of the classroom, I skidded toward summer break on a downward spiral. And I know I’m not alone.

We Type As like our routines. Changes in THE PLAN are exciting, but they can be frightening at the same time.

Maybe you’re not Type A. But maybe you’re a parent. Maybe—I’m guessing here, you and your children thrive on some semblance of structure.

Come on, moms and dads. Back me up on this. Doesn’t the thought of filling all those unstructured hours of your child’s summer vacation strike a wee bit o’ fear in even the bravest of super parent hearts?

Ridiculous, I know. Yet the fear of summer lingers. It nabbed me yesterday morning in yoga class. I like my yoga instructors Grace and Boomer. I’m comfortable in this routine, this respite from the stress of relocation, motherhood, and what to cook for dinner. I don’t want to give it up.

But how will I continue to do yoga when my son’s out of school for the summer? What will I do with him during class? Turn him loose to run wild through the YMCA? Sit him in front of the Wii for an hour? What if he wanders out to the pool alone? What if (insert catastrophe)?

runs with shovel

And how will I blog this summer? When will there be time? Who will read it? What about the other projects I want to pursue? What if I miss all the opportunities? What if I wake up in September and they’re ALL GONE? What if the world ends tomorrow? What if (insert catastrophe)?

The only way to roll with the changes is one step at a time. One season at a time. That’s why they usually don’t happen all at once. Thank You, Lord.

I’ll take a cue from yoga. Follow my breath. Put my shoulders back and down. Let myself feel grounded. Take a moment to be thankful for another day.

Then I’ll put on my sunscreen and forward march into summer.

The day is Yours, and Yours also the night;
You established the sun and moon.
It was You who set all the boundaries of the earth;
You made both summer and winter. Psalm 74:16-17 NIV

Dear Routine,
Though we’ve got to say good-bye for the summer, darling, I promise you this: I’ll send you all my love every day in a letter Sealed with a Kiss.

How do you roll with the changes in your routine?

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