Back to School: A New Level of Parenting

The kids are officially back to school here in the midwest. This forces us parents out of some lazy practices like sleeping in and movies before bed on weeknights. Ugh, I almost dread the beginning of the school year as much as they do. But all good things must come to an end.

It’s been fun kids but now we get back to business.

Early Bedtimes

As I wrangle the wild beasts to get their teeth brushed, bathed, read to, and tucked in for the night, it doesn’t help that they constantly screech that the sun is still shining. “HOW COULD IT BE BEDTIME, MOM!? IT’S STILL LIGHT OUT!” I gently remind them with “Listen here little people! I get it, but I can’t handle your nuclear meltdowns that start promptly at 3:30pm! So, chill and get your buns in bed.”

Snacks and Lunches Galore

If you have ever had lunch at the school, you likely visited the bathroom afterwards for an embarrassingly long time. I once had “Thanksgiving Feast” at my son’s school and vowed I would pack his lunches from then on. I don’t know how that kid ate hot lunch for that long complaint-free. Now I pack a lunch of PB&J, granola bars, and a bit of fruit or veggie too and the kid is as happy as a clam. In fact, we are all happier for the change, my conscious, his gut, and even the bank account.

Homework

Though I think giving a second grader homework is overkill (personally, I never had homework until middle school), I realize the teacher has a job to do. However, trying to get a super-active boy to sit and read for the eternity of 20 minutes amoung other things, is no easy task. Once again, I find myself gently reminding him that something will explode (the boiling pot of pasta, my patience, ect) if he doesn’t get his butt in gear and get it done before I have supper ready. Cruel, I know, but shit, we got bikes to ride, dogs to walk, and a grand total of 5 minutes to relax before the witching hour strikes and it’s bedtime. I hate homework as much as he does. I swear, it’s like the teacher wants us parents to know their suffering first hand. If I wrote a letter to her, it would go a little something like this… “Dear teacher: I sympathize, I empathize and I will even buy your class room supplies! But please, stop with the extra curriculars on my end. Love, Exhausted Parent who already worked a bazillion hours this week and just needs wine.” I feel like she might give me at least one day a week off, maybe?

Being “Involved”

To be a mom that can volunteer for field trips, classroom book readings, and craft days… is not something I am able to do anytime soon. My house relies on my income and therefore, I need to work and I need to do it during normal business hours. I appreciate you opening up the classroom to helicopter parents everywhere but it’s just not going to happen. Not for this momma anyway but, thanks for the guilt trip, errr, invite I mean.

Ok, maybe that last part was a little harsh but I can’t be the only person wondering why the hell all the “Parents Invited!” programs that my kid NEEDS me to be at are always around some obscure hour of the day. “Starting promptly at 1:45pm… your kids most important performance of his lifetime and if you miss it, you might as well throw yourself off a cliff.” …At least, that is how it sounds to a working mom.

But I digress…

All in all, it’s fun to see your kids excitement for going back to school and for them to see their friends again whom they’ve missed dearly. Having school age kids is a marathon of its own but it’s all part of the process and I know one day I am going to desperately miss it. šŸ„°

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