Hang on, folks. You can do it. June is just around the bend.
Soon, our calendars will be less crowded. We can hang up the fancy dresses, put away the Sunday shoes. We can sit down to family dinners in which all members are present in both body and mind.
When May has passed, we can breathe.
The refrain is the same every morning this month in our house: "What do you have tonight?"
Each of us seems to have something — or more than one something — that celebrates an end or marks a new beginning. The inevitable overlap requires practiced logistics as well as special guest appearances by helpers who juggle their own crazy calendars.
Take Monday night, for example.
Katie had middle school tennis tryouts at the high school.
Cooper had solo and ensemble contests at the same high school, but first he needed to come home to change.
I made it home from my final staff meeting of the year (wearing neon yellow for "Reading Brightens Your Future" theme day) in time to drive Katie to the tennis courts. While caught in comically slow parking lot traffic, I waved to Cooper, who was speeding home on his bike.
He was in the shower by the time I pulled into the driveway. His hair was still damp as I drove him back to school for competition.
I arrived for a standing Monday tutoring appointment at exactly 5 p.m. While I was teaching adverbial prepositional phrases, Katie was practicing volleys and Cooper was warming up with scales.
Katie completed tryouts in the middle of my tutoring session and caught a ride home with momma friend Liz, who ferries children from the high school all afternoon.
Cooper finished his second song while I was wrapping up. I sent a text to offer a ride home, but by then his walk was nearly over.
The three of us reunited briefly. As I listened to tales from the court and the band hall, I made a grilled cheese sandwich to fuel my next journey. I left veggies, bread and cheese on the counter for the kids' DIY dinner and returned to the minivan. Next stop: back-to-back church committee meetings.
Both children were still immersed in homework (what is May without some giant projects looming?) when I returned home, this time for good.
It was late, but we need clean clothes and clean dishes, so we launched into super-attack chores mode, taking out the trash, folding towels, loading the dishwasher.
In the middle of all that work, we discussed the obvious: "What do we need to gather for whatever we have tomorrow?"
Cooper needed dress clothes for his National Honor Society induction, which would take place immediately after marching brand practice, leaving no time to change at home.
I needed a beach towel for outside reading day at school.
Katie, mercifully, needed nothing special (except perhaps a nap).
I hesitate to complain about May because it represents what makes our lives joyful -- music and friendship, growth and possibilities, milestones and community. And one day, I know, May will no longer revolve around my children's schedules. I'm not going to wish away these days.
I will, though, embrace June and its slightly lazy days with open (albeit tired) arms.
Tyra Damm is a Briefing columnist. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.