End of the school year deadlines binged on my phone, and I felt like it would be impossible to walk out in two weeks on May 30. I still had piles everywhere in my third grade classroom. This year had been the busiest yet, with grade level rotations, science fair, ballet, Living History Museum, two field trips, and after school chorus.
After coming in early, staying at school late, gallons of coffee and pounds of chocolate, I was done. Done with report cards. Done with educational cum files. Done with taking every staple off my walls.
When the last bell rang, I walked my students up to the front gate, watched them match up with their parents, and took a breath. My smile got bigger. I took a leisurely lunch with a co-worker. Then I grabbed my purse and my laptop, turned in my keys to the secretary, and I was free.
Ten weeks of no alarm clocks. Especially since my husband had recently retired. We had loads of house projects in progress, and out-of-town company coming in a month, but I needed something first.
Instead of cleaning the Room of Requirement (exercise, storage, guest room), we packed up the trailer, loaded up the dogs, and headed for the beach. For five straight days, we slept in, walked on the beach and around the camp, played card games with friends, and took naps. We savored the cool ocean breeze, knowing it would be up in the 100s when we got home.
It took a few days, but I started to feel normal again. When we finally packed it all up and headed for home, I was ready to start my summer.