I knew that H2O’s “Blitz” at the beginning of Kent State University’s Fall Semester would be a challenging couple of weeks. Like an athlete preparing for a long-distance race, however, I went into things planned and prepared. I was trained, rested, fueled, and focused. I ran hard and crossed the finish line with next-to-nothing “in the tank.” And I felt pretty good about the way it all turned.
Unfortunately, I was unprepared for the second race that started towards the tail end of the first one. The very same day that H2O’s Blitz concluded, my kids had their first day of school. Right after the first day of school, Elliot had his second soccer game of the season. The following day, Cor was assigned a team for the Kent Parks & Recreation flag football league. And ever since then, it feels like we’ve been “off to the races” again with hardly a moment to catch our breath.
On Wednesday evening, Marci and I were supposed to get some time to go out on a little date while some friends from church hung out with our kids (and the kids from some other families in the church as well). Unfortunately, Elliot had a soccer game that interfered with the front end of the time that babysitting was available. So this is what our “date” looked like this week:
- 4:50 PM – Directly after work, Eric drives Olivia and Cor from home to the babysitting location.
- 5:10 PM – Eric drives back home while Marci and Elliot drive home (in a separate vehicle) from the soccer game.
- 5:30 PM – Elliot arrives home for some food and a shower. Marci and Eric depart immediately for downtown Kent.
- 5:45 PM – Eric drops Marci off at the Chipotle Restaurant at the corner of Main and Lincoln and then drives to the babysitting location.
- 5:50 PM – Eric picks up Cor and his friend Carter to take them to their flag football practice in yet a different part of Kent.
- 6:10 PM – Eric picks up Marci from the Chipotle Restaurant (it was a really long line!), and they drive together to watch the rest of Cor’s and Carter’s flag football practice. The best conversation of the evening happens while sitting on wet grass and eating burritos from a brown paper bag.
- 7:00 PM – Eric, Marci, Cor, and Carter drive back to the babysitting location to drop off Carter and pick up Olivia.
- 7:30 PM – Eric, Marci, Olivia, and Cor rejoin Elliot at home and immediately begin the process of getting the kids ready for bed.
- 8:30 PM – Elliot, Olivia, and Cor are in bed for the night… In very short order, Eric and Marci also retire for the night, knowing that Eric’s alarm clock will be ringing at 4:30 AM the following day.
And believe it or not: Yesterday (Thursday) evening may have even been more frenzied than Wednesday — with Elliot’s soccer game being away and a number of different school- and work functions happening throughout the evening!
I’ve been experiencing some genuine stress through all this. Is this what the next 11 years will be like for us (until Cor graduates from high school)?!? I’ve heard of older parents sharing similar adventures in shuttling kids from one place to the next — but sheesh… I hope my endurance builds through the experience. Any parenting tips or prayer support would be greatly appreciated.