It stared out as a typical Monday morning. Shuffle the kids out the door and into the van for the morning school drop-off routine. Shortly before we reached the first stop, the high school, I noticed something rather odd. It was quiet. Is this for real? I asked myself. There was no chatter, squabbling, complaining. The kids were just quiet. I almost pointed out how quiet it was and then I realized that’s a stupid thing to do. Instead, I just savored this rare moment, wondering how long it would last.
Not too long.
After the Oldest had exited the van and I had driven a few blocks, the silence was broken. And, oh, how it was broken! The noise level jumped 100 decibel in six seconds. Think about how much noise a motorcycle would make while driving around inside of your van.“I’m going to make up a song about Thanksgiving!” (commence song about turkeys) “They don’t have Thanksgiving in Canada. Or other countries.”
a loud laugh that sounds like a horse“That laugh is obnoxious.” “Your laugh sounds like a horse!”
more laughing at the horse-laugh“Mom, don’t forget I have choir practice after school. Please don’t be late!” “Stop making fun of me!”
continued horse-laugh“Rosie and I were playing this game at recess…” “Mom, should I go to band today?” “…and now Willie is chasing us at recess, too…” “Hey, look! It’s Emma’s mom! HI EMMA’S MOM!!!!!!!!!!!” “You can quit laughing like a horse now.” “Can I get unbuckled now? We’re almost at the door.” “Make sure no trash falls out of the van when you get out!”
And just as quickly as the noise started, it stopped. The door to the van slammed shut as the last kid trotted into school. I let out a big sigh as I turned the van homeward, shaking off the slight headache that developed from the last 30 seconds of chaos.
I spent the rest of the morning, enjoying the quiet of an empty house, smiling to myself when I remembered the crazy morning ride and the randomness of the conversations (or rather, the separate simultaneous monologues). How quickly things can escalate! My quiet peace will be ending soon as it is almost time for the afternoon pick-up. I’m sure the silent spell this morning was just a fluke. I expect the van to be another lively spot of conversation, complaining, and miscellaneous noises. New topics, new things to laugh about, and hopefully nothing to cry about. Maybe another new song or game. When and if their chaos quiets down enough for me to be heard, I might just explain to my little Blessings that, yes, Canada does have a Thanksgiving.