Public shaming. aka Thank goodness for summer!

Today is the last day of school. I dropped Ben off a little early. Dressed nicely in his light blue school shirt and tan shorts. Both hanging on by a thread after 9 months of long days and hard play. Sweat and dirt and stains. I was about to be sentimental about his last day of kindergarten….then noticed he was walking into a sea of children wearing what ever the heck they wanted, instead of uniforms. Damn you free dress days! You’ve mocked my organizational capabilities all year! T-shirt Tuesdays. Picture Day. Dr. Seuss week. Grandparents day. Please can we eliminate all exceptions to the rules?!?!

I was slightly baffled as to how everyone seemed to know something I didn’t, because I had thoroughly read all school communication this week to make sure I was prompt for all early release days, contributing to all teacher gifts and present at all class parties. (please note that I am 1 for 3 on that list this week and there is still room for further failure. update: went to the wrong park for today’s class party. 1-4)

So I casually text my more organized friend who gently let me know that if I’d filled out the end of year parent survey, I would have been notified about free dress today. SHOOT FIRE. DANGIT. SONOFABITC*.

I don’t know why this rubbed me the wrong way….SO BADLY. But it felt like a hundred “everyone is doing this parenting thing better than you.” Really. There were approximately 750 kids who’s parents had their shi* together more than I did this morning. But we had green smoothies. DID YOUR KIDS EAT VEGGIES FOR BREAKFAST?!?! Don’t answer that question.

Come ON….If I’d have filled out the online parent survey I would have been told it was free dress day? No mercy for the less organized or apathetic?!?! I’m sure someone else shared all my sentiments already. My vote doesn’t count. The election is decided WAY before California. (just kidding Barbara…I vote in all major elections…and none of the minor ones). And shaming my children. Please. Let’s make them wear a sign that says I eat fast food and watch TV. Which isn’t totally true because we only eat at In-N-Out burger, which we all know doesn’t count as fast food because it’s made fresh. And we only watch Netflix. Which isn’t TV in the traditional sense. But you don’t really care.

There is just a building feeling (and research) that all my shortcomings will damage my children. And I don’t know where to compartmentalize that information. So I just hold it in my hand all day long. Which makes me drop other things and forget important things.

Callum is eating cookies for breakfast while I type this. For real. Have you ever tried to stick to a grocery budget…and feed 4 boys? It’s slim pickings on Friday and “eat what you kill” on Saturday. Good luck men.

All that to say. It has been a good first year of grade school for my oldest. We all survived the transition to 5 day a week school and early mornings. And we have learned a lot this year. Namely:

1. You do not have to wear uniforms to meet the teacher day.
2. You do not need to “drop what ever you are doing” and rush to pick your child up at school if the nurse calls. They are probably faking it and even if they are not, it’s cozy in the nurse’s office and they are in better hands than with you…who are likely annoyed that your day has been derailed by a sick child.
3. Optional homework is not really optional. It is a test of your parental commitment to education. And there is a secret place in your child’s folder where the teacher grades you. I am sure of it.
4. If you are too tired or lazy to pick your child up at first carpool, then they will walk through second, then third, then they get sent to after school care where they get snacks and play. WIN-WIN.
5. Don’t sign your kid up for the Christmas break camps. They don’t think going to school over Christmas break is as good of an idea as you do.
6. Quickly glance at the school calendar before making travel plans so that your child does not miss the Fall Festival, Grandparents day, Christmas party, school musical, and a field trip all in one year.
7. Send money with your kid to the book fair so they don’t ask EVERY MOTHER THERE for money. And come home with a lot of expensive books that you didn’t pay for and don’t know who to thank / apologize to.
8. Take them out of school for no reason and go get ice cream. Because it’s fun. And who doesn’t like playing hooky?

Cheers to summer and WEAR WHAT EVER YOU WANT DAYS!!!