Monday, September 1, 2008

Our Lady of Blessed Peace and Quiet

By Suzanne Macpherson

“I have a theory about the human mind. A brain is a lot like a computer. It will only take so many facts, and then it will go into overload and blow up.” Erma Bombeck

Sounds like menopause doesn’t it?

Happy September! I’m the new girl on the block. I’ve been an Erma devotee for many years and am proud to join the channeling.

Two more days. The leaves are hanging in there, the kids are poised for re-entry and me, I’m ready to write!

True confessions—I have never been one of those mothers who choked up and cried when her baby left for the first day of school. Well, maybe the first child, and okay, maybe kindergarten. But after the fourth and final child I was booting her out the door with a new notebook, a new Ticonderoga #2 pencil, new tennis shoes, a shiny red apple to plunk on the teacher’s desk, and a hearty “buck up honey, you’ll be fine.” Okay, I’m just kidding. I made sure she was in her cutest little outfit (see photo) and safe behind the proper desk before I went out in the hall and did the happy dance.

Doing the happy dance in the hallway of our elementary school ten years ago was how I met my kindred spirit moms. An irreverent posse of women ready to party har-tee when the first September school bus finally took us out of our summer misery. We instantly created the First Day of School Bakery Visitation and Caffeine Blowout.

We have a patron saint too: Our Lady of Blessed Peace and Quiet.

Guess what? Eleven years later, we’re still celebrating.

No more frothy caramel laced summer frappuchinos for us. no sir! We go straight for the hard stuff: Double tall mocha, full fat, full chocolate, OH baby, buzz me now! Forget the low fat bran muffin; we’ve taken this day to its full cream cheese Danish potentiality.

These days after the "first day" party we all go home to shovel out the house from three months of summertime and the livin’ is easy. This is when all that sugar and caffeine come in handy. When you have teenagers, it’s like a frat party gone bad.

I have three boys and one girl. Boy one (A) and Boy two (B) are respectively: A) Married to the coolest girl in the world, employed as a chef, and B) Living the good life in San Francisco, working as a journalist writing for The Onion and other publications, free of parental support for the most part.

Thing Three (boy 3) and Thing Four (“finally, a girl!”) are living at home. I TOLD Boy 3 if he left food around the room eventually some type of animal would move in and live with him. Or maybe it was the mouse that laid a trap for a teenager. His very own teenager to feed him granola bars and leftover chocolate pudding in individualized cups. Interesting thought. Who DID order that mini-fridge?

Girl of course is completely organized and has made an itinerary broken into half-hour increments, posted on the wall. Before you shake your head because your girl isn’t like that, rest assured this is actually . . . not . . . completely . . . true. It has taken three weeks of nagging/bribes/yelling to get her to pull it together. The itinerary part is true. It was a grand way to procrastinate the full cleaning of her room. But that’s a whole other subject- procrastination.

Two more days and I’m going to dive into that novel writing thing I do like a sinful dessert I’ve been saving for three months - but it’s not stale.

Till then I’m going to light a candle to Our Lady of Blessed Peace and Quiet.


Sleeping with Ward Cleaver said...

Oh, we do so love that patron saint, don't we? And wow, it really is like a fraternity party (minus the stale beer, we hope!). The house definitely is much more intact once the kids go back to school...Intact is good!
Welcome to the Channel ;-)

Daisy said...

I'm one of those who provides you with the opportunity to worship the saint of peace and quiet; I teach. :)

Suzanne Macpherson said...

Daisy, my mom was a teacher for 30 years- she started with Kindergarten and worked up to second grade as we like to say. As far as I'm concerned teachers need to have a HUGE raise! YAY FOR TEACHERS!! Hope your first day was super with a big gold star!

P.S.No stale beer, just stale chips and flat half-drunk root beers. Bleah

just me said...

A kindred spirit! I don't know who was happier to see the kids go back to school - me or the dog. I swear I hear my dog SIGGGGHHH with relief every morning after the last one is out the door. I need to teach her how to "high five"!

Suzanne Macpherson said...

Just Me, TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF MY LIFE!!!! They've LEFT the BUILDING! YAHOOOOOOO!!! That was the sweetest school bus I've seen in a long time.
And now back to my previously scheduled CAREER!!!

Thank you for being a kindred spirit

Barb McKone said...

Suzanne- I spent yesterday, the first day of school for both my youngest son and my husband, in my pj's all day with a remote in my hand. I ate half a pie. Today, I'm back to task, but yesterday was a little slice of deep-dish heaven. Here's to back to school time!! And, welcome!