9

Separation of Church and State

Sometimes, I’m happy that we are spending the girls’ preschool and nursery school years in the UK, where they don’t have the separation that is so doted on in the United States. Now, before anyone rails at me and reminds me of religious persecution and why we have the separation of church and state in America, realize that I’m talking about it because of this:

Kicka is the sheep in the back left, Sam is all the way on the right

Kicka is the sheep in the back left, Sam is all the way on the right

I mean, really, there is something to be said for a real Christmas nativity play. The fact that we don’t have to tiptoe around the reason that we have this beautiful (eta: spiritual) season. The fact that my children acted out the birth of Christ, and were able to talk about him in school.

My Angel

My Angel

Something to be said for recognizing that the majority of people (at least in the UK, and in America) do celebrate Christmas, and yet it’s the most taboo of the holidays to talk about in public school. Yet many schools highlight other holidays, faiths, and religions in the interest of education and diversity, but ignore the majority, which could be taught as educational, too.

Baah!

Baah!

If you don’t agree, I don’t mind. As long as you agree that this is the cutest angel and the cutest sheep you’ve ever seen, we’re still on the same page.

3

Crazy Women

I must admit, when I hear women talk about how they never leave their children, I snicker a little bit.  Not because I am judging them, but because I can’t understand it.  I love my girls very much, but feel strongly that I am a better wife, mother, and person when I get a break from them on a regular basis.

As a result, shortly after we moved to England Samantha started going to nursery 2 mornings a week for 4 hours each.  It gave me the chance to spend quality time with Erica, and it gave Samantha a chance to interact with other children without my interference.  I thought it was a good choice for everyone.

Though she did struggle with it at first, it eventually worked out well, and she transitioned to 3 sessions a week, 3 hours a day.  Again, I got time with Erica, Sam and I got a break from one another, and everyone was happy.

Then, when I was suffering from pretty severe depression and anxiety in the fall, the counselor recommended that Erica go with Samantha to nursery a few days a week, to give me a real, honest to goodness break from the girls.  She thought it might be good for me, might be good for Marcus (who felt overwhelmed by me needing to pawn the kids off on him the moment he walked into the door), and might be good for the girls.

She was right.  That break from the girls gave me some me time, helped me get my house back in a bit of order, and made me enjoy the time I had with the girls even more.  It was only 2 1/2 hours three times a week, but it was perfect.

And now, today, I take a new step.  The girls will stick to their 2 1/2 hour sessions on Mondays and Fridays, but on Wednesdays they are going to be at school all day, from 9-3.  I decided to do it for a variety of reasons, including the ones I’ve mentioned above. But also, so I can focus more on my writing.

I’ve had numerous friends say, “What are you going to do with yourself? You’ll have a spotless house!  You’ll be bored.  It will go to fast!”  The list went on and on.

I laughed…”It will be heaven,” I said.  After all, I’m not one of these women that can’t be separated from her kids.  In fact, when we lived in America, we were constantly out and about, the girls with friends and family.

But here I am, 35 minutes past drop off time, and I’m looking around, listening to the quiet, and wondering what I’m going to do with myself all day.

Now who’s the crazy woman?