It’s Spirit Week at my kids’ school aka Stretch Mom’s Stylist Skills Way Too Early in the Morning Week. Today is Wacky Wednesday. It takes longer to put together an outfit that looks like absolutely no thought went into planning it than one might think. I’m not sure why wearing mismatched socks, inside out and backwards clothes, and crazy hairstyles inspires school spirit, but it was deemed appropriate for today on the Spirit Week instruction sheet the kids brought home last Friday and we try to be team players around here.
Speaking of team players, on the way to school my son anxiously exclaimed, “Oh, no!!” and accompanied his outburst with a quick palm thrust to his head. This usually is his sign for “I forgot something” so I started looking around the car to see what we’d left at home. Band is on Tuesdays and Thursdays so I knew we didn’t need his trombone. He had his backpack and I’d seen him frantically stuff his papers into it on the way out the door (never mind that our family way is to have our backpacks ready to go the night before). I’d signed all permission slips pending for the week so I asked him, “What is it?” to which he responded, “Never mind.” This is usually his sign for “I’ve forgotten to tell you something that I don’t want to mention now because you’re probably going to be irritated and gripe at me.” Eventually after a couple of minutes of coaxing, he informed me that he’d forgotten about basketball the day before.
I did, in fact, find this news irritating and preceded to gripe because I filled out the paperwork for him to play basketball at his school the first week of school. I added my name to the email list of parents who wanted to be informed when basketball began. I had discussed with my son the importance of writing announcements and assignments in his school-required planner because “now you’re a fifth grader and people are going to expect you to begin taking responsibility for your information.” But somehow we’ve missed the start of basketball.
When we arrived at the school, I accompanied the kids to the main office (Did I mention we were late today? Our first tardy of the year, so it’s appropriate that it happened on Wacky Wednesday, I guess.) to check them in to school and I asked the secretaries if they had any more information about the start of basketball. They did not. They made a few phone calls and although we didn’t get all of the information, we found out practices/clinic/try-outs/whatever-is-going-on-with-the-basketball-in-the-gym started Monday afternoon. Sigh.
I took a big, cleansing breath, hugged my son to my side, and assured him that all was well. I sent him off to begin his school day secure in his mother’s love and confident in his ability to do better next time.
No, I didn’t. I left in a huff. I don’t think I even told him goodbye.
At least I hadn’t blown it with my two youngest kids. Except that I did. We decided to spike my youngest son’s hair which he thought was a great idea,right up until after I’d smeared hair wax all through his hair to make it stand on end. At which point he decided he didn’t want to have spiked hair. It’s hard to undo hair gel without washing hair which we didn’t have time to do. So I fussed and he whined and the mood for my morning with him was set. I gnawed on my daughter’s goodwill by reminding her she was the one who always made us late and grilling her on why she hadn’t planned her outfit the night before like I’ve told her over and over and over to do. So as they were walking down the hall to their classrooms, tardy slips clutched in their little hands, they weren’t whistling “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah.”
Neither was I as I stomped to my minivan and drove back home with my fists and jaw clenched.
Crud. I blew that one.
It’s hard teaching little people how to become responsible adults. It’s hard knowing when to step in and rescue and when to let them flounder on their own. It’s hard knowing that I haven’t heeded my own advice to “just breathe.” It’s hard not to become overwhelmed with deadlines and responsibilities and obligations. It’s hard to remember what’s most important during weeks when every day feels like Wacky Wednesday.
We are entering the busy season. Life keeps speeding up with more and more things added to our To Do lists and it won’t slow down until after the holidays. I don’t want to look back in January and realize that I missed my favorite time of year because I was too wrapped up in all the “stuff.”
So let’s make a pact. We might not be able to keep the Wednesdays from being Wacky, but we don’t have to be whacked by them! Let’s share our wisdom with one another and talk about what we do to make sure that the main thing stays the main thing in our lives. Do you have any tidbits to help manage the scheduling craziness that happens this time of year? Any time-saving recipes? Decorating ideas to make our holiday nests cozy? Seen any good holiday ideas on Pinterest lately that we might have missed? Good gift ideas to keep us from spending too much money this holiday season? Any family traditions we might want to adopt? If you can put aside my earlier mistakes of the day, I have a few ideas to share. If you have any ideas, send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll start posting our tips and ideas on Wednesdays.
In the meantime…
Happy Wacky Wednesday!