School is back in action for all of Marion County

It’s that time of year again. Tabor students have returned. Marion County college students have left to start at or go back to their colleges. And all of the county kids 12th grade and under are gearing up to head back to school or have already started.

While there are a lot of great things that come with that (Anyone out there get giddy over new school supplies even if you don’t go to school? No? Just me. Okay cool.), it can be a hard time. Especially for us adults and parents. I DO! I want new folders too.

It seems like every day I am getting hit with one more thing I need to pay for or find time to buy. This is with a school district that is amazing and keeps costs to a minimum. Plus one of my kids had all of their school supplies paid for and picked up by a church. And we get a ton of hand me downs from cousins and friends. So, I know I am getting off easy, and I am still overwhelmed.

It seems like things have been going non-stop all summer. Now we are just jumping into an even busier time. Not sure I am even ready, and I think I have been less busy than a lot of our students have!

Then my daughter who writes better than I ever have sent me a piece that she has been working on, and I realized that while I have been mildly inconvenienced by this crazy transition time that is August, some of our kids are really feeling big things (and chances are they have been all summer). But it calmed me and made me want to just slow down and have more patience.

Kids are often pretty overwhelmed even in the fun times and they need our love and support to make it a little easier. Even if they aren’t our kids. Even if it is the college student in line at Dollar General. Smile at them. Or if it is my kid being silly somewhere. Smile at them. Ask the kids how they are or something about an interest you know they have. Let’s all make things a little less overwhelming for them.

The Pressures of Being 16

By Sarah Paulus

This summer I have been trying to figure out how to balance having a full-time job, learning new material for cheer, learning music, training for a triathlon, being involved in swim team, getting ready for another school year and so much more.

On top of all of that, I am also trying to fit in time for friends and social life. I am a very social person, and I love to be around people. I fear missing out on things so I constantly want to be involved. That has proven to be quite hard this summer when I usually don’t get off work till 8 p.m. On top of that, all my friends have jobs and their own hours that can prevent us from getting to hang out.

If you are anything like my parents, you might ask “why do you do so much then?” Well the answer to that question is, I don’t know how to not be busy. Trust me, I’ve tried.

According to the StrengthsFinder test, “Achiever” is number two on my strength’s list. I find so much joy in completing tasks and being productive. While sitting at home doing nothing does not.

This summer I’ve been working as a full-time lifeguard at the Hillsboro Family Aquatic Center and I have absolutely loved it. It has given me some great experiences and memories.

I have ended up spending a lot of my summer there. I think my longest workday this year started at 5:45 a.m. with morning lap swim, and because of teaching lessons and then working during the day, I didn’t go home till about 8:30 p.m.

Although I do find a lot of joy in being out with friends and working, it can be a lot. I don’t always know when to take a minute to breathe.

A lot of the time, it took my body forcing me to stop by getting sick for me to cancel a plan or spend the day at home. I definitely had to learn how to balance my busy schedule. And with summer almost over, I think I’ve finally figured it out.

As summer was beginning to come to an end and with school just about to start, I also had to find time to learn music for Spirit-and-Celebration and begin learning a cheer dance. Trying to find time to do that on top of other things to prepare me for school, has been a hard task.

Although this summer has been crazy busy, I’ve loved every second of it! There have definitely been moments where it’s been super overwhelming, but looking back, it was all so worth it. I got to do things I love and be a part of things that mattered. I couldn’t have asked for anything more than that.

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