My eldest son started school this September, so I really appreciate this read. I also can't stop chuckling at the "so I have enough time to shower & cry" comment from above. Accurate!

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The neighbors above sounded happy... Or at least there were definitely signs (and I mean screams and wall pounding) that they were on their list straw. I'm a bit relieved too honestly, for their lack of emotional regulation (the parents!) and for my son's own back to school moment, in a new school, in a new country, but he loved it and made new friends, so mission accomplished!

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Dude I can’t believe I didn’t think we were all thinking this.

Our son (also 4 years old) was in camp but we just finished a 3 week break between camp and the first day of school and my wife and I... oh gosh it was intense and insane but we obviously love the little booger. We have 3 kids, a 2 year old daughter and a 7 week baby.

We were so happy to drop him off. We felt like we finally were released from our own beautiful prison of being parents. We still love it though.

Today when it was just me, my wife, and the two younger ones, we said wow this isn’t so bad. And then our 4 year old came home and I kid you not screamed and threw toys all over the place for almost an hour. Lol it was great.

Thanks for sharing.

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What’s better than kids back at school? Having a kid who now walks to/from school on her own.

Great read per usual, Kevin. And that flat white reference and what likely is a child who could talk your ear off about Spider-Man a la Ishmael about everything, reminded me of my friend’s newsletter Flat White Whale whose topic should be self-evident.


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Sorry. Counter-example here. I love having my kids at home and was not looking forward to the return. It brings a bunch of faffy chores, my kids are burned out at pick up each day, and it’s much harder to get through to the real them. I love that they have friends and enjoy their play, but the work is lacklustre, they learn more under their own steam guided by us, their parents. We’ve long considered homeschool. One day something will nudge us over the edge. I honestly didn’t enjoy the idea that we must be secretly looking forward to the end of the holidays and that’s the only explanation. I stopped reading there.

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Sep 6, 2023·edited Sep 6, 2023Liked by Kevin Maguire

Our kids are still a ways away from school age (3 years and 10.5 months, respectively) - but I think that anyone here who has been on a "vacation" with young children can relate to the mood in that café after the kids went back to school :-)

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Sep 6, 2023Liked by Kevin Maguire

My little one started her senior year of kindergarten yesterday. I picked her up and she was so even keeled. Seasoned, it seemed. I asked how it went and if she was excited to go back tomorrow and she looked at me, side eyed, “yeah, whatever.”

Four going on fourteen.

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Could not have been more spot on for me as a parent to a 4yo who goes back to school in 2 days. I’ve used this “25th mile of a marathon” metaphor myself with my partner this week. School represents an essential part of the proverbial village we’re so often missing in the industrialized West… and, it still feels like we’re starved for even more support. This is the pep talk I gave to myself on this a while back, if it’s helpful.


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