Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First Day of School

Lila and I had our first day of school today. On a grading scale of A-F, I'd say the day started as a D- and ended as a B+. Things got off to a bad start early in the morning. And I mean early in the morning. As in 12:45 am when I awoke to a crying baby. After 30 minutes of having no luck getting her back to sleep, I rudely informed my sleepy husband that she was "his baby, too" and "suggested" that he take a shift trying to get her back to sleep. Of course, great guy that he is, he willingly got up for late-night daddy duty and I crawled back in bed.

Unfortunately, I'm blessed (cursed?) with the gift of supernatural mommy hearing and despite turning off the monitor, closing the bedroom door and covering my head with my blanket, I could still hear every distraught shout emitting from Lila's room. Long story short, an hour and a half later Lila was finally asleep again and I groaned as I looked at the clock that shone a green 2:25am. Baaaaaaahhh. So much for dedicating a good chunk of my holiday to getting my act together so I could get to bed on time and thus have that elusive "good night's sleep" before our first day.

Baby Girls seem equipped with a sixth sense of knowing when the most inconvenient time to stage a revolt might be. I can just see her sitting in her throne of a high chair, stroking her evil-looking kitty and staring at a high-tech screen that shows a calendar with the date "September 7th" circled on it saying, "The night before the first day of school? Perrrfect!"

ANYWAY. After hitting snooze twice and waking up with a total of 6 hours of sleep logged instead of the planned 8 hours, I stumbled into the shower (wasted a good 2 minutes staring into space holding the razor in my hand and had to settle for shaving only the bottom halves of my legs), dried my hair in a jiffy and actually made it out the door on time. Impressive, no?

So why the D-? Well, you see, Lila comes to school with me (we have a nursery for the teachers' kids - seriously, this is the best mommy job EVER) so I wanted to get there early to get her set up, get my classroom put together and be the smiling teacher every nervous 6-year-old wants to be greeted by at the door. So I pull into the parking lot an hour before school starts and at this point I'm still optimistic. I even snapped the iconic "first day of school shot" of Lila (check out her glazed over look as she attempted a bleary-eyed smile). However, after unloading and lugging a sleepy baby (who, by the way, I had to wake up in the morning after all those late-night shenanigans), a pack-n-play, 3 coolers (my lunch, Lila's lunch, and her bottles), all of my school stuff, a diaper bag, a bag of Lila's sleep stuff, and my purse up the ramp to the door, guess what? All the doors are locked. So there I am standing outside the school door, staring inside like a lonely bag lady. Good grief.

15 minutes later, already sweating, I'm rescued by our school's director who (hallelujah!) has a key. So now I'm down to 45 minutes and then I remember that I'm not allowed to park where I parked so I pass LJ off to some responsible kids, and run down the hall to move my car. 37 minutes. I sheepishly hand the childcare ladies my 3-pager about Lila's life story, set up her pack-n-play, kiss her bye-bye and run to set up my classroom. 20 minutes. (I should insert here the fact that I share my classroom with a sunday school class AND an after school program so it's always a bit of a treasure hunt trying to find where everything ended up in a week's shuffling.) The first kids arrive and I'm still scrambling to rearrange tables, set out nametags, and sort through the mass of papers I brought with me for parents to fill out. So much for being the in-control smiling teacher to put little first-graders at ease. They had to settle for frazzled and sweat-glistening. But hey, I'll smile for the photo opp anyway.

30 minutes into our day and I'm rambling to the kids about our greetings we'll do each morning when one cutie-pie pipes up, "What's a greet?" See now if only I had had the time to collect myself before the day started, I would have read through my first day lesson plan and remembered that I have to explain EVERYTHING the first day! Yes, I've been doing this for 6 years, but 6 years ago these students were Lila's age! (Oh geez, that reminds me. One of my students pointed out to me today that I was more than 20 years older than her. Thanks for that.)

So I stumble and bumble my way through a process that should definitely be a lot more graceful after 6 years of practice (but hey, I'm only on year one of being a teacher AND a mommy!), and finally get a break around 10:30 when I ship the kids off to PE. I check in with the childcare ladies, expecting to find a ready-to-eat Baby Girl who has just woken up from her nap (wait, I mean ready-to-eat in the sense that she's hungry, not in the sense that she's the one being eaten, although she did look especially scrumptious in her cute little first-day-of-school outfit). Instead, I'm told she just stopped yelling 5 minutes ago after a 30 minute nap-protest. You nursing mamas out there will know that this is not good news.

About that time, Little Sister calls and reminds me of her offer to pick Lila up from school if she's having a hard day and I tell her she might be the heroine of the day if Lila doesn't take a long enough nap. Fortunately, this is where things began to turn the corner from D- to B+. Lila slept an hour (she's been only giving me 45 minute whimpy naps at home recently), woke up ravenous and ate ALL the food I brought her for lunch (including the broccoli of which she had spit out every bite the night before), and was happy as a clam until my 1:00 break when I got to feed her, snuggle her and put her down for another hour-long nap! I also got my act together as teacher and had the kids at ease by the end of the day - with time to spare to pass out birthday treats for one of the kiddos and play Heads Up Seven Up! Howa-bout-that!

LJ and I came home from school and snuggled on the couch, the Husband ordered a pizza and I rewarded myself with a DP from QT for surviving the first day of school. Lila went to bed at 7:30, with nary a peep of protest cuz she was all tuckered out from the day's excitement. One day done, a whole year's left to go. When next Monday night rolls around, say a prayer for us. I have a sinking feeling we'll need it.


1 comment:

Jessica said...

love this one kels. you're such a good mommy.
eric- you're an awesome husband and an awesome daddy.
lila- well, i think you know how i feel about you....but just in case, i love you, i'm proud of you and i'm so glad you're my niece!