Summertime, and the living is easy? Vanessa Benson

All the moms at school: “Aren’t you so excited for summer break?”
Me: “ Honestly…… I don’t know” I shamefully whisper.

Am I the only mom whose blood pressure rises slightly when I think of the length of summer? It seems like every other mom is eagerly anticipating summer and having their kids home all the time. I love my kids so so much, but the idea of camp mom 24/7 is a little daunting to me. Maybe my mood is being heavily influenced by a combination of hormones, having 3.5 kids, ages 9, 7, 4, homeschooling two days a week and being up 5 times a night to pee because I’m 5 months pregnant.

I sometimes wonder if I’m cut out for this job. I know, its a little late now that I’m pregnant with number 4. But, my boys’ constant fighting and bickering and what I can only assume is them asserting their need for male dominance is so incredibly draining. It feels as if every time I think I have solved the most recent battle or conflict and gotten my boys to sign the latest peace treaty, I foolishly surmise I can finish the laundry when another volcanic kid erupts…..

”My brothers aren’t letting me play with them, (big tears and screams)” -the whining child

“He’s cheating, he’s such a liar! I wish I didn’t have a brother! I will NEVER play with him again.” -the prideful child

“I can’t help it if they don’t know how to play by the rules, I was just telling them what was fair”- the know-it-all child

So am I just not cut out for this? I think my general threshold of chaos times three is naturally low. It’s hard for me to roll with the constant screams and bloody injuries that need tending to. So I try and plan playdates and schedule activities. It seems like this is the only respite to solve or mildly alleviate sibling rivalry. That and TV.

As I sit here in the peaceful, quiet cool of the morning having my coffee (yes I drink a double shot latte every morning while pregnant) while the kids are all still asleep, I pray and ask God for the patience to not even make it through the day. I’m not asking for miracles, but just to not lose my mind or patience before 9 am. But then I remember that moms have gone before me and weathered the storms and even turned out decent human beings. I remember that there are great moments, swimming, playing cards with kids, hanging out with friends, watching them play unfiltered, unstructured, and the slower pace of summer. But am I “excited” that it’s summer? I’ll tell you after 9:00 AM!

Vanessa Benson
Author of: Out Came The Sun, My hopeful Journey Beyond Postpartum Depression



  1. I know the struggle. I’m remembering from the child’s perspective as well as from the Mom’s. It’s bittersweet for all. Yet we survived. Godspeed September.


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