Tim and I decided in May to enroll in a local parent-run preschool. It is a well established school and came highly recommended by a friend and we loved it at the Open House. I immediately signed the boys up, delighted at the idea of being involved as a teacher assistant, at the close proximity to home, at the cost (200 hundred and change a month for both children to attend two days a week). Delighted in general. It remained mostly a concept over the summer, something we talked about with the boys to encourage a smooth transition.
And then the week comes and we are late to Back to School Night because I thought that it said 7:30 p.m. So we sheepishly sneak into the classroom and sit in short chairs. And we sign up to work the first few weeks to get our obligations out of the way and we receive our community jobs (I nabbed the garden spot) and we meet some of the other parents. And it starts to hit me that we are totally into this thing, this thing called school. And that we have opted to be a part of a community of largely unknown people and children.
First, I have to say this is not going in a bad direction, this post. Just a “still overwhelmed” direction. Because now we have fund raising to do and job to fulfill, just lots of things that I realize now I should have been prepping myself for. Not the least of which is my role as teacher assistant in a room full of two year olds. To think I was excited about this.
See, the first day of school was technically Thursday, so everyone came and left their little ones and Mrs. B was there with myself and another Dad from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Mrs. B is their teacher and I think she is younger than me but I love her dearly already. Because she is cool and has tattoos and is totally level headed and practical and unflappable. And I pulled diaper duty as the policy is no Daddy changing diapers or assisting on the toilet because there are a handful of parents uncomfortable with that kind of thing. And then it was a rainy day schedule, due to the ash falling out of the sky, so no outdoor play. And did I mention that their room, though adorably arranged is only cooled by a few oscillating fans? And that it was 100 degrees or so? So, yeah, it was not the most auspicious of days. Not to mention the 11 2 year olds running around trapped in a room with which they are only slightly familiar with adults that they barely know and other kids they are just learning to like.
But at least we got it over with, the first day. I now know what it is we signed up for. And I think it is going to be alright. Not sure about the boys as I was there the whole time so to them it must have seemed like an extended play time. Not sure how Tim will fare when he is the only man in a room full of madness and a few women, but I am guessing it will be better than I as he will not be on ‘diaper and potty duty’. And how will I do? That is yet to be seen. Right now my back hurts and I feel tired and maybe a little disappointed and scared.
Worst 1st Day of school pictures ever. Point and shoot cannot capture two year old. And he was up from 2 until 6 a.m. the night before teething. Check out those under-eye bags. And no Mace cause then diaper duty struck. It gets better, right?
This would not be the first time that my imagination runs in congruent to reality. And I know it will not be the last. This week I felt stripped of a few things. My imaginary school scenario crashed down with the first words of "fund raising obligation" and the hour I spent scrubbing linoleum glue off the pre-school floor. First day pictures blurred by with a point and shoot as the Canon is fritzing on us again. My hope for more time seems dashed to bits on the rocks of reality.
And I sound so totally dramatic. But here is to a new week, a bluer sky as some of the fire smoke eases in our area, a different parent cleaning my kids bums on Tuesday and quite possibly a few other fresh starts coming soon. I think I just got excited.
Here is a video of getting ready for school that made me feel lighter.
And here is why we have to get the kids out of the house at this point. They know how to turn on the hose. Enough said.
I know it gets easier. And the fire will eventually be out. And the house will not be in total shambles due to keeping them inside for days at a time. And and and. Just let it be soon. Please.