Monday, September 14, 2009

what must she be thinking of me?

I don't know if I have mentioned that Danny has the same teacher (Ms. M) as last year. She moved up to kindergarten and happened to have Danny in her class again. I thought this would probably be a good idea; Danny is already used to her and her style of teaching, and since he is a lover of all things routine, how could this be bad?

Well, just today it occurred to me how this could be a negative. And not for Danny, but for me. You see, she got to see all kinds of things last year, like when Danny insisted on wearing a pumpkin hat to school for weeks on end in the Fall. What's so weird about that? Well, the hat happened to be one Danny received from my friend when he was 6 MONTHS old. Yeah, it was pretty snug.

Then, there was the time when Danny got a pretty bad infection in his fingernail bed. It spread to about three fingers. I treated it with Neosporin and it looked like it was getting better. Then, I got a phone call from the school nurse telling me to take him to the doctor. I was so embarrassed. I had seen definite improvement in his fingers and didn't want to force him to endure a doctor's visit when it looked like it would get better on its own. Plus, I was only days away from my due date and .... well, I was so darn tired.

Anyway, my point is that if we had gotten a new teacher this year, any weird things that Danny or I do would be happening on a clean slate. Instead, Ms. M may already have some ideas of the kind of flakey parent I am, so now when I do something extra flakey it will not seem like an isolated incident.

I think I would prefer for my kids' teachers to think that I actually have my crap together. I know. Seriously, that perception wouldn't last long, but it would be nice to start the year with the teacher assuming I am somewhat competent. On the other hand, Ms. M probably has pretty low expectations of me, so whatever I do couldn't make it too much worse....

This year, though it is only 3 weeks into the school year for us, Danny has already come to school in very interesting ensembles. He has finally decided to take an interest in what he wears and I so miss when he let me dress him, for a number of reasons.

First off, he has absolutely no regard for any fashion rules and matching clothes doesn't even register as an option. And to me, it is so not worth the fight that would ensue if I refused to let him choose his clothes. I know most kids choose strange clothes to wear together. It's not really a big deal.

However, Danny doesn't stop there, but insists on wearing clothes that don't really fit the weather. He prefers to wear long-sleeve shirts and sweat shirts, though it is still in the mid 80s here, and he will sometimes beg to wear sweatpants, which is where I draw the line. After all, I don't want my kid collapsing from heat stroke on the school playground. Also, he only has a small handful of shirts that he actually likes, so Ms. M will probably start to think that he only owns 3 shirts: his Wall-e shirt, his G-Force shirt, and his Bakugan Battle Brawler shirt. He has no qualms about wearing these shirts over and over. I have to force him to let me wash them. Last week I even gave in and let him wear the Bakugan Battle Brawler (I like the way that sounds) shirt two days in a row. It was pretty filthy by the end of the second day, but hey, at least he got ready for school with unprecedented ease.

Anyway, I know these are all relatively minor quirks, but today, I did something that was especially flighty, though funny. Danny eats the school lunch about once a week and brings his sandwich the rest of the week. Today, he decided he wanted to partake of the corndog/tater tot feast the cafeteria was providing. Because Bil got Danny's bookbag for him I didn't realize Danny's lunchbox was still in his bag. His empty lunchbox.

So, when Danny got to school, the teacher probably assumed Danny had brought his lunch. What a surprise, then, when he got to the cafeteria only to discover his lunchbox was empty. Not a big deal, as he was able to just get a tray and enjoy the repast that he wanted, but I'm sure Ms. M must think I forgot to pack his lunch.

So, in the eyes of my son's teacher, not only am I a lenient parent who doesn't launder her kid's clothes or take him to the doctor when he has an infection, but I am also one who neglects to provide nourishment and sustenance to her growing son.

Well, I can only go up from here, right?


a Tonggu Momma said...

Now... granted, I also have SPD. But I also used to teach pre-k and kindergarten. And I would not think you are a bad mom... I would think you are a practical one who is extremely wise about which battles to fight and which ones to let go. I could stand to learn some things from you. (((hugs)))

Susan/LilMommy said...

Been there done that with the whole lunch thing. At least you can look back and laugh...that makes you a great mom.

HeatherPride said...

I DREAD the day when Logan starts to dress himself. He is like your son, earlier this summer he beat me to his closet and pulled out his corduroy pants and matching long-sleeved shirt. Poor kid nearly boiled himself before he reached the front door!

Denise said...

And remember also....she may not be thinking ANY of those things but applauding you on letting him have independence. Maybe she is chuckling because she, too, has children and knows how dang hard it is to get it all together.

I love you regardless of how well you have it all together...or not...hehehehe

carrie said...


don't sweat it...i showed up to work in caleb's classroom a couple of weeks ago only to realize that his pants were on backwards. i can only imagine what ms. p. thought of me. she had to have noticed. i even asked caleb if he wanted me to take him to the bathroom to help turn his pants around and he refused. by the time i picked him up later that day his pants were turned around and he was wearing them correctly. i still don't know if he changed them on his own or if his teacher realized his mommy is a dummy and she herself helped him.

Mrsbear said...

Oh no. It'll probably make for some awkwardness, but I'm sure she understands. She is a teacher after all, you can't possibly be the only frazzled mom out there. Your post does make me glad that my kids have to wear mandatory uniforms. I know how hard it can be to dress kids who want to make their own fashion choices. My oldest went through a phase where all she'd wear were dresses. Now all she wears are pants, go figure.

Kia (Good Enough Mama) said...

I second what Tonggu Mama said. You're wise because you know which battles are worth fighting. It takes some parents a lifetime to figure that out, if they EVER do. Also, I'm sure the teacher has seen much worse. Again, some parents probably can't match their clothing! ;)

Sarah said...

Independence trumps anything else. If Danny's teacher doesn't recognize that then she needs to get her head out of her arse. Just my 2 cents :)

lonestar said...

I agree with what's already been said, knowing which battles are worth choosing and supporting his independence :). fwiw, Bitty won't wear anything other than Thomas t-shirts, so he wears the same shirts every week despite a closet full of other nice clothes (mostly hand-me-downs from his brothers, but cute stuff!).

All of my boys would wear shorts and t-shirts all year long if we let them... they hate wearing pants, long sleeves, or (gasp!) coats but that's where I have to draw the line there when it gets cold.

Deb's World said...

Just think what other parents in the same class go through. She probably has lots of kids who do things that are different. She's met you and she has to know that you love Danny. That is the most important thing.