I picked the kids up at ten minutes after one and admired the ribbon my son was awarded for being a good runner. I listened to my kindergartener tell me about her day, and sent my fourth grader scampering back to her classroom to get the lunchbox that never seems to make it into her backpack. While we waited for her to reappear, the two younger kids scampered off to play in the park. I stood by myself with my face raised up to the sun, basking in the warmth.
I saw other moms spreading out picnic blankets and settling in to talk while their kids played. I need to start getting up at 4 am again so that I can join them for these after school park sessions. I don't know if I can make it happen right now, though, as I've been sleeping as though I've been clubbed over the head. I just got a new memory foam mattress topper and I sink in with a delicious body wrapping flumph every evening and I just can't stand being pulled out of bed.
After my oldest reappeared at my side, I walked slowly to the van, calling the kids to my side as I went. We loaded up and headed home, with a last wistful look at the sunny park. Tomorrow. Maybe tomorrow.