In June I was whining and wondering when September would get here. Now it's around the corner, and I am fizzling with anticipation and quivering with dread. A return to school means my days are once again my own. I am free to work work work during school hours without relying upon my in-laws' baby-sitting services.
The pre-school (not preschool) battles have already begun.
With Precious Daughter, the current battles surround school supplies and bedtime.
I am trying desperately to reset their late-night summer clocks back to school hours. The shortening days help somewhat, but Precious Daughter refuses to go to sleep without a fight. She sits up in her bed (as she is right now) refusing to lay down and sleep. She says she's not tired, but, golly, her eyes are falling out of her head and she has dark circles under her lower lids. These stubborn late nights create a helluva morning battle to get the heck out of bed. Most mornings she won't willingly rise (subject to much poking and prodding by me) until after 9:30.
Last week we spent over thirty minutes selecting a backpack from Target. I'm really not pleased with buying this made-in-China crap, but economics and a heinous shortage of American-made options forced my hand. Thankfully, I was able to steer her toward something that wasn't so painfully trendy like Hannah Montana or High School Musical. She finally selected a pink one with multicolored polka-dots and a monkey on the outer pocket.
Then, dear God, we moved on to the junk that goes inside. Holy moly. The biggest battle surrounded pencils. Yep, pencils. Last year, Precious Daughter spent much of the year not sharpening her pencils. Why? She didn't want them to get stumpy, even though that's the whole "point." We ended up with mechanical pencils with refillable leads and erasers.
Then we battled over crayons, markers, rulers, highlighters, and red pens. It's a stinkin' pen for Pete's sake, but in her mind there's still plenty to argue about. I spent the better part of two hours kicking myself for letting her come along to pick the stupid backpack.
Thank God she wears uniforms. I'd never have the stamina to bicker over school clothes.
A whole 'nother chapter is Precious Daughter's general upset at leaving me to go to school. There is lots of wailing and protest. It will begin on her first day of school, and it will continue daily through October. We'll have recurrences on at least a weekly basis through Christmas break, and it will return daily after the New Year until February or so, with weekly occurrences until the end of the year. It's just too much for a mom to take.
Oh, and that's just one kid. Mighty B. isn't making this easy at all.
Mighty B.'s problem is that he refuses to wipe his butt. The boy just turned five and he will not -- no way, no how, nosiree -- wipe his butt. He sits on the toilet and bellows:
"Mommmmmyyyyyyy, I'm doooooone!" (Can you just hear the melody?)
I ignore him and he bellows some more, so I tell him to get started and I'll check his paperwork in a bit. He continues to bellow and I ask him, "what will you do when you're in school all day?" I remind him that his teachers aren't permitted to help him.
Several minutes later, he comes shuffling out of the bathroom, springing his underwear between his ankles, "Mommy..." By now I have to intervene, or things are gonna get ugly.
It's gonna be a long year.