Back to school is always hard for me, though not because I miss my kids. I feel the same relief as all the other SAHMs when the kids head off to school. No, it's because my husband has to go back to work, too. It's so lovely to have him around all summer, especially when there's a very rambunctious toddler in the family. We do role reversal all summer: he takes care of the kids most of the time, while I do my own thing. This summer, I started a little home business. Little in the scheme of things, but A Very Big Deal to me, with huge emotional investment. It is painful to have to cut back my time on that and go back to being the SAHM while he goes off to work. And I miss him.
I knew in advance that Lena's teacher was new to our school, and that she was young, but I didn't learn until this afternoon that this is her very first teaching job. I really liked her this morning: she seemed poised, confident, and sweet. But now that I know she's new to teaching I'm all worried. And yet I feel so stupid for worrying because first of all, this morning, before I knew, I thought she was great. And second, everyone has to start some time. Heck, I'm married to a teacher. Why not give her the benefit of the doubt? And third, Lena's not a particularly high-maintenance kid; she'll probably do fine wherever she is. And fourth, since Miss Smith is fresh from school she's presumably full of all the latest theories and ideas and so forth. She's probably super-motivated. And yet, and yet. There are a couple of very high-maintenance kids in the class. Well, I signed up to volunteer in the classroom, so I'll be able to keep an eye on her, at least for an hour a week! :)
One of the high-maintenance kids in the class is a little girl who, at the beginning of kindergarten last year, could not write or spell her own name or recognize most of the letters of the alphabet. She appears to be economically disadvantaged. No parent or guardian of hers was ever seen at any school event. She had no address or phone number listed in the directory. She diverts attention away from her academic difficulties with bad behavior. She has no idea how to get along with other kids. Once last year she said to my daughter: "Lena, you're a bad girl, and I'm going to tell you that every day!" I tried many times to get Lena to see the sadness of the situation, how this girl is trying to be Lena's friend but just doesn't know positive ways of getting attention, how often she herself has probably been called a bad girl, etc. When she saw Lena in the hallway this morning she ran right up to her and gave her a great big bear hug. Which Lena hated, but didn't break away from. And which made me a little teary, the poignancy of it.
Joey's going to have a great year. His teacher is also pretty new to teaching, but not brand new. I do know she's very creative with lesson plans. Even better, he was (deliberately?) put in a class separate from his two best pals. He was devastated, but I'm glad. The fewer the distractions, the better.
Daniel started off the school year by waking us up at 5 am. By late afternoon it was apparent that he had some kind of stomach bug, resulting in some extremely unpleasant diapers. Ew!
Sorry for rambling & bad grammar, but I've been up since 5 am and I am So Fried. Good night!