Thursday, August 10, 2006

Back to School Blues

First things first: Please go here and pray for Kim's husband's safety. I'll wait until you get back.

This is the first year I haven't had to buy school supplies. I didn't get to take my girls shopping for school clothes, not that I miss shopping, it's just... different. I'm not fond of shopping, especially with my older daughter, who is so picky - MY WORD, that child is impossible to please. OK, truth is it isn't the shopping I mind, it's the spending. I could window shop all day, not spend a dime, and come home, happy as a clam, empty-handed. If a clam had hands, that is, which they don't, but you get the picture.

Anyway. My office building is located right next door to one of our two high schools. It isn't the school my girls would attend if they were here, but it's school all the same, complete with buses loaded with kids and parents in SUVs dropping off and picking up their offspring. My office window affords me a view of the school's driveway, so at about 3:30 each afternoon I get to watch the cars line up as parents wait to retrieve their children from the clutches of public education. This was my cue last year to give Lindsey a call to make sure she was on the bus and on her way home. That isn't the case this year. Sounds depressing, don't it? Yeah, well, that's not my thing, although I could stand to lose my appetite and drop a few pounds. I appreciate the irony of it is all I'm saying.

School for them doesn't even start for another week and a half. I've often wondered if we should have homeschooled. I did consider it prayerfully before Lindsey ever started school. Back then, she was the sweetest thing. I couldn't bear the thought of sticking my precious baby on a bus with all those older kids. All the schools there are on one big campus, and each bus runs one route to pick up all the kids from Kindergarten through 12th grade. Her older sister, Robin, was in high school at the time, and I knew that Lindsey would be trying to tag along with her and her friends. Terrifying thought, actually. I began to pray about it well before she turned 5, but her dad was against it. It wasn't a popular choice among parents in the community. Most of them were teachers, and many of them were members of our church. Kids need socialization, don't they?

Miraculously (?) as soon as she turned 5, all the sweetness and light evaporated, and I couldn't wait for the bus to run so I could shove her sassy little self out the door and lock it securely behind her. I didn't, of course. She turned 5 in February and wouldn't be eligible for kindergarten until August. So, you know, I had to wait.

Oh, she was so excited. She already knew how to read and tie her shoes and a bunch of other stuff that parents leave up to the public schools to teach. Can you believe some parents don't teach their children to read? Kindergarten started one week later than the other grades, and Sarah and I accompanied our school girl to her class. To get pictures of her first day of school, not because she wanted us there. We had gone the week before to find her classroom, meet her teacher, and choose a desk. I was so proud of her when she led the way down the hall straight to her class a whole week after having been shown the way only once. That's my girl!

Sarah and I hung around just long enough to let the teacher know that we were available for field trips and whatever else she might need us to help with. Then we were free to go do our own thing. That was a pretty good year.

11 comments:

Blessed Beyond Measure said...

Every year now I watch the neighborhood parents congregate at my next-door neighbor's driveway, waiting for the buses on the first day; it brings back all the feelings, relief to send them on their way, sadness they have to go. Oh my, this motherhood business - makes us all blubbering messes, whether we're in the thick of it or just looking back over it all, doesnt it? I'm with you - school shopping was NOT a favorite part of it all...

Diane said...

That $400 dollars you'll spend on that phone bill would have bought a bunch of school clothes, wouldn't it? Good GRIEF, I'd faint dead away if I opened a $400 phone bill. Ironic that hardly any of that went on calls to you, ain't it? Hang in there, girl....

Brenda said...

Yes, Diane. Mobile to mobile minutes are free.

Belle-ah said...

Bev, you know I can relate, with all my back to school angst the last week! LOL Just try and keep a mental picture of that cute little girl who was all excited about the 1st day of school! (((hugs)))

RANDI said...

Your children are blessed to have you for a mom--and they WILL know this themselves someday! Please don't second guess yourself too much about school/homeschool. I think that in hindsight we could all make different decisions but today it matters that you look forward to Christ and to your kids. (((HUGS))) for you, I know this is all so difficult and painful for you!

Barb said...

I couldn't have said it any better than the ladies who left comments before mine. I know the scenes you see outside your window make you sad. I'm sorry. And I hope this all gets better soon. Has to break a mother's heart. My prayer for you is that your girls wake up and realize how blessed they are to have a mom who loves them so much.

Dawn said...

I've thought many times that I should have probably home schooled, in retrospect. But there was zero respect for that option in those days, and not much help at all. Besides I couldn't even get K. to practice piano! How would I get her to do her math? I had to help the other K. with his homework and we had a horrible time. I always say that we would have been dead or in prison if I had - either I would have killed them or myself, or they would have killed me!

Melanie said...

sweet memories of your girls! :>)
When I was in college I had to help with a kindergarten class for a psych class I was taking. My entire time there, all the teacher wanted me to do was to teach them their colors. Can you believe an entire classroom of kindergartners wouldn't know their colors yet? I didn't even have kids then, and I knew that was so wrong. Parents just don't take time with their kids. I know people have to work, but there has to be some time, a few minutes here and there, to spend time with your kids.
I know you miss your girls. You have been in my prayers!

Tammy said...

Oh, I know how much you miss your girls.

I homeschool as you may know, but regardless of whether you do that or not, the important thing is that children feel loved. And from what I am learning about you, those children must feel very loved. As I said before, they will someday appreciate it.

Paulette said...

Hey Brenda, Ironically other areas of my life I feel the same way. When I think of things my husband and I did all the time together, then something triggers that sadness that he is gone. It is a pain that I hope in time will subside and I wont feel such sadness. I hope it is the same for you.Keep praying because God is always in the miracle business and could still bring them home. He can change there hearts. I am praying for that for you.
((((HUGS)))))

Kelli said...

Brenda- hugs, hugs and more hugs. I'm remembering every day that God is faithful to us, and our families.