The white board in my office looks like the wall of a prison cell, lined with stick marks as I count off the days of August. “Soon,” whispers the hopeful voice inside my head. “Soon.”
The voice whispers because it knows that I must keep my feelings on the down-low. Because in my world, there is a cult-like enthusiasm about summer and admitting that you find the whole season exhausting and stressful is a blasphemy. Yet I know that I am not alone. In the grocery store line up, women like myself make cheerful chitchat about the great weather, and trips to the cottage, and barbeque parties, but we smile through gritted teeth and everyone is stopping at the liquor store on their way home.
It is time for September…
I want to put my horribly uncomfortable strapless bras in a pile on the street and run them over with my car. Then I want to go inside and put on an outfit that covers both the cellulite on the back of my legs and the slightly wobbly flesh of my upper arms. This outfit will include at least one clothing item with pockets. It will accommodate the wearing of full-ass coverage panties. And it will cover both shoulders so that I can wear my super-comfy bra with the thick, dependable, beige straps. I get excited just thinking about it!
I want to put a bunch of stuff in my slow cooker and have it turn into dinner while I am at work. I want to eat meat that doesn’t taste like a combination of Montreal steak spice and barbeque sauce. I want to stop feeling guilty because I never get around to making watermelon salad and end up dumping giant, hammock-shaped cuts of over-ripe fruit in the composter every week. And I want to drink a glass of wine inside, where there are no hornets circling the rim and no black flies doing the backstroke in my pinot grigio.
I want summer “vacation” to end…
There is a genuine risk that I may violently dismember the next person who talks about how they are dreading the end of summer and having to “get back to the grind”. Because I have been in “the grind” for the past two months and trust me… “the grind” is a lot harder when you are trying to figure out what to do with a 12-year-old every weekday and the summer camp you paid $400+ for now demands that you take most of Friday off work so you can show up and watch campers perform their interpretive version of Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream.
The chorine in the local pool has chewed up all of the family bathing suits and I can’t buy new ones because the stores sold out of bathing suits back in May when they began stocking the shelves with “Back to School” wear. The pretty flowers I planted in spring died at the end of July when we went to the cottage for a week and forgot to pay someone to water them, so the deck is now decorated with giant pots full of their spindly brown corpses. We’ve lost all of the beach towels and the water bottles and the sunglasses. There are six left-foot flip flops in my front porch… and they all smell like hockey bags.
It is time for September.