A friend of mine, who is a school principal as well as a mom, was talking recently about how crazy and hectic May is. That reminded me of a column I wrote years ago, when my kids were still in school. I dug it out of my files and sent a copy to my friend and a few other moms – who said it described their lives right now, too. So if you’re a mom who’s just about at the end of her rope by the end of May, hang in there. You’re not alone, and June is right around the corner.

Here’s a portion of that long-ago column:

I used to think December was the busiest, most hectic month of the year. Then I had kids, and December became even busier and more hectic. Then the kids started school. That’s when I realized I was wrong.

It’s May.

As soon as May rolls around, I get antsy and jittery and stressed out. It shouldn’t be that way. In May, the weather turns beautiful, even in Minnesota. Flowers are blooming everywhere. May is the home of Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer. So what’s the problem?

It has to do with change, and disruption to the normal routine. Mothers of school-age children know that disruption is the normal routine, but this month it’s even worse than usual. I’m afraid to walk more than a few feet from the kitchen calendar, where we log in everyone’s outings and activities. In May, the calendar squares are never large enough. On top of everything else, there are final projects and end-of-year parties. Confirmations, concerts, proms, plays, sports banquets, and graduations.

In May, I’m always afraid I’m going to miss or forget something. Or misread one of the squiggly lines on the calendar and show up in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or deliver the wrong child to the wrong event.

As a mom, I’m pretty good at juggling, and usually have a number of balls in the air at the same time. But in May, I live in constant fear that I’m going to drop one, and that all the others will go flying off in every direction. Or bop me on the head and knock me out cold.

I don’t have time to worry about any of that right now, though. I need to check the timetable for my daughter’s choir concert on Thursday, and iron the shirt we just bought for my son’s Confirmation – then keep my fingers crossed that he doesn’t outgrow it before Tuesday. There are three volunteer appreciation events this week, and I try not to skip those. I love going places where somebody else does all the baking, decorating and serving, and then tells me how much they appreciate the work I do.

It’s almost the end of the month, so things are winding down now. Next week, I’ll flip the calendar page over to June, and breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that once again, I have survived the month of May – and I have eleven months to get ready for the next one.

The column “Find Your Buried Treasure” appears weekly in the Chanhassen (MN) Villager. This column was published on May 26, 2016.
©Betty Liedtke, 2016

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