C'mon, tell the truth: how do you REALLY feel when the kids finally go back to school after the summer holidays?
And have you seen the memes that have been doing the rounds on social media of late, featuring mums posting their back to school pics?
Mum of five Keshia Leeann Gardner went seriously viral after she posted this hilarious pic of herself literally jumping for joy in front of her brood on their first day back at school, along with the message:
Happy 1st day of school, kids. I'm gonna miss y'all.
Now I laughed a lot at this picture because it pretty much sums up how I feel when I finally get my beloved babies out of my hair after nine long weeks of us driving each other mad at home. (Yes, nine weeks, it's actually inhumane.)
And I laughed all the harder because it's such a darned relief to feel like it's ok to admit that I am glad when my kids go back to school. Seriously, people, I am so done with feeling like I am somehow defective as a mother because I'm hardly weeping into the Weetabix on the first day back at school.
I adore my kids more than life itself and we have a lot of fun hanging out together over the summer – blah blah blah – but it is nothing short of joyous when we finally get back into the groove of our term-time routine.
I guess I am just not cut out for full-time (aka relentless) motherhood – and I am pretty sure my kids wouldn't hesitate to tell you that they breathe a sigh of relief upon their return to school, too.
Do I need to feel guilty about that? Nah. I'm a pretty awesome mum (yes, even if I say so myself - I did check with my kids and they have approved this statement) and we've had a fabulous summer with some seriously unforgettable moments. But we just weren't made to spend days and days and days trying to dream up things to do to keep us all entertained while the lovely Irish rain drives down outside for most of July straight.
Now I've got friends who are elated when their kids go back to school - they think the summer holidays are interminably long, and by the time back to school season is officially upon us, they are well and truly out of ideas for keeping the little munchkins entertained for even one more minute.
But on the other hand I've got friends who dread their kids going back to school. They literally start suffering from back-to-school-blues mid-way through the summer and lament the end of those long, lazy days of not having to make packed lunches.
There are also those who seem to treasure every second of the school summer holidays, and others who find themselves fit to be tied at the thought of having to spend one more day holed up at home with their little darlings.
It always fascinates me to see how differently mums see things, and much as I wish I were the type to dread back to school season and cherish every second of the summer, the truth is I find myself almost tearful with relief once the kids start getting ready to go back to school.
So thank you, Keshia, for making me feel like I'm in great company. All that said, I'll totally wander the house feeling lonely come September 1st. (O-k-a-y, for all of about ten seconds.)
But enough about me. How do you feel about the kids going back to school? Are you with Keshia and do you unashamedly jump for joy at the return to normality that the start of the new school term brings? Or are you dreading the little darlings returning to the classroom? And if so, can you please tell the rest of us what your secret is?!