Tuesday, September 18, 2012

And then I became THAT mother

If you know me, you know certain things about me. Like the fact that I’m not usually late. I’m not usually disorganized. I usually have all my ducks in a row. My hair is usually brushed.


Not today.

Last night I didn’t sleep. I don’t know why, but I fell asleep around 5:30 this morning. And the power had gone out briefly overnight so whenever I did open my eyes to check the clock it was always some blinking number that looked like I had time for ten...more...minutes...zzzz...

I sat up with a start at 7:40. The exact time Caroline and I were supposed to be at Girls on the Run; she in a running capacity and me in a coaching capacity.

I flew down the stairs and saw her sitting on the couch, in her pajamas, watching TV.


"Um, 7:40?"

"'Um. 7:40??' Yes, 7:40. 7:40 when you’re supposed to be at school. Get dressed. Come on come on come on!"

Speed in the morning isn’t her thing. So while I flew around the kitchen gulping sips of coffee, she stretched. While I hastily threw breakfast on a plate, she stopped to pet the guinea pig. When I tossed anything I could find in her lunchbox...she complained.

"That’s a messy sandwich and that’s not the snack I want."

"Where’s my good water bottle?"

"Did you do the laundry?"

"These strawberries taste funky."

Let’s just say I lost my patience with Her Highness. Let’s just say maybe I raised my voice. Let’s just say she got upset and couldn’t find the shirt she wanted to wear and couldn’t find her safety patrol belt and then it was 8:00 and then I said we just wouldn’t go to Girls on the Run because I was late and she was irresponsible and then she started to cry. So then I felt bad but was still irritated and didn’t want to let the other coaches down so we went to Girls on the Run really late and both feeling crummy.

Then, as I was walking out, in the rain, my friend pointed to an enclosed area of the playground and said, "Oh, look, someone left their backpack. Let’s bring it into the office."

We walked over and I noticed it was the same color as Jack’s backpack. It had the same shark on the outside. And whoa, it even had his same initials!

Well, shit. Because it had been there all weekend. In the rain. So the library books were wet. The papers were wet. The lunchbox smelled.

Seriously? I am that mother who doesn’t notice that her son doesn’t bring home his backpack? I’m that mother who didn’t notice I wasn’t emptying his lunch box? I am that mother who didn’t – gulp – check his progress report on Friday? Or Saturday? Or Sunday? Or, thanks to the holiday, even MONDAY?? I am that mother whose son is so laid back it didn’t occur to him his backpack was missing? I’m sorry, but did the OCD gene your sister and I share just skip right on over you? Or Jack, how about last night, when I told you guys to pack your backpacks for school today and you quickly and confidently said, "Did it!" Did it? How’d you do it IF YOUR BACKPACK WAS ON THE PLAYGROUND???

Whew. So there I was. Flustered. Sweaty. Not caffeinated. Carrying a dripping backpack with soggy contents into his second-grade classroom. I was mad. I was a mess. I was in running clothes with no makeup on and I was a little frantic. And his teacher is someone you’d hate if you didn’t love her because she’s gorgeous and wears gorgeous clothes and never yells and has nice teeth and nice hair and would never, ever not notice a missing backpack for four days. She’s so perfect she just smiled and said, "Oh, I understand, we’ll just dry everything out!" in a cheery voice and I wanted to run away crying and press a big, fat, redo button on my morning.

Yup. That was my morning. I am, officially, That Mother.

Now don’t you feel good about how put together YOU were this morning??

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