Wow! It seems like just yesterday I was walking home, wiping away the tears, after dropping off Will on his first day of kindergarten. Now, we're in the homestretch!
Will has done great. He can read, write, add and subtract. His teacher says he's right on track. (Mike and I though both secretly know he's brilliant!) Will has adapted well to the transition into elementary school. Whew! We thought we'd hit a home run .... little did we know.
See, Mike and I have struggled through kindergarten. On the grading scale of 1 to 4, we hover somewhere between 1 and 2. Stressful? Yes. Chaotic? Oh, definitely!
Who knew there was so much to do?
There were certain days assigned to specific colors. I thought I had it down. Until one day, Will insisted they had to wear yellow. Well, I just knew it was green. Off he went to school in green. When, we got there, everyone was wearing yellow. Oh, the anguish!
So many of my friends talked about the homework their children had. I sympathized, but secretly thought "Oh, we're so lucky! No homework for us!" Then, my husband, Mike, pointed out the monthly homework assignment sheet in the back of Will's notebook. He noticed it in November! We missed two whole months.
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I grew up with little variety in my lunchbox. Same with Will. We went months surviving on peanut butter and jelly. I'm not creative when it comes to culinary skills. No cute little roll ups speared with toothpicks in my son's lunchbox! No fancy bento box. Oh yeah, and I still haven't figured out how to keep his various water bottles from leaking. He never fails to come home with a soggy lunchbox that's leaked into his back pack and ruined all his papers. He always gives me that look.
At the beginning of the year, you feel invincible! You know you're going to be Super Mom! You sign up for everything. Then, you start getting inundated with emails. You can't keep up. Your husband says he's unsubscribing to said emails. Suddenly, you're alone with hundreds of emails asking for volunteers! Asking for money! Reminding you of teacher appreciation day (the night before)! Finally, you give in and just start deleting all the emails without reading them. (Sorry everyone!)
The first half of the year, we didn't miss a beat. We were creative! We were clever! Fast forward to January, the wheels fell off the bus. Life got crazy. I started forgetting "Mystery Bag Wednesday" until Thursday. One day, we got to school and realized we'd forgotten that day's assignment (bring in a stuffed animal). My husband was out of town, I was late for work. I panicked. But, I ran home, searched the house, found the animal, ran back, ran down the hall, stood in the hallway and did my best Joe Theismann and threw a perfect toss to Will in the classroom. I was drenched with sweat and overcome with stress. Then, I exhaled.
So, now it's May. And while Mike and I are a bit wiped out from our year in kindergarten, we're optimistic we will one day get the hang of this.
And for you new moms ... if you think high school or college or graduate school was hard, you haven't been to kindergarten in awhile.
Julia is a reporter for WRAL-TV and the mother of a kindergartner. She writes monthly for Go Ask Mom.