The good thing about blogging is that it (sometimes) forces me to go research phrases I’ve bandied about for years but never really bothered to learn the full meaning. Running the gauntlet is one of them. I’d always pictured “the gauntlet” as something like Indiana Jones in The Temple of Doom–a long hallway of spikes shooting up from the floor, axes swinging from the walls, and a ginormous ball bearing down on you while you run like hell for safety.
I wasn’t too far off the mark…
According to our beloved Wikipedia, running the gauntlet is a form of physical punishment where a captive runs between two rows – a gauntlet – of soldiers who repeatedly strike them.
Why am I researching this particular phrase today?
Because it’s the first day of school.
While my little darlings weren’t armed with pickaxes or swords, I’m not without my share of bumps and bruises. Honestly, looking back at it from the quiet of my cubicle at work, I think I should pat myself on the back for all the stuff I knocked out in a forty minute span.
- Got ‘em up (The hardest part.)
- Picked outfits (Anticipate this to get worse as the school year drags on.)
- Handled minor breakdown of six-year old who suddenly couldn’t remember where her class was located
- Made their bed
- Detangled two sets of bedhead (Second hardest part – Picture two Cousin Itts.)
- Whipped up pancakes (Don’t get too impressed. They were Eggo’s frozen finest.)
- Double checked to ensure teeth were really brushed
- Started the laundry
- Cleaned the litter box
- Made two lunches and loaded up backpacks with snacks
- Straightened the house
- Made coffee for my thirty minute commute (AKA – decompression time)
- Kissed everyone goodbye and ran for it
Yep. Not too shabby.
Over the last few years, I’ve learned there are two parental camps when it comes to the school year; those who live for summer vacation and those who celebrate when it’s over. I am, unquestionably, in camp number one.
For roughly ninety-eight days, I’m released from coaxing the knots out of hair, the melodrama that accompanies attire selection, and the utter torture of afternoon math homework. Yes, childcare is wickedly expensive while school is out, but the hubby and I happily shell out the dollars and wallow in every second of no fixed agenda.
What about you? If you have or had little kids, which is your preference? Even if you don’t have kids, are there portions of the year you’d choose over the others? Where’s your happy place?