I should have seen this coming. How could I forget who I am? As each of you has blogged, tweeted, and commented your anxieties about your babies going off to school, I sat here in my little haven I like to call De Nile and pondered if I was the bad mom who couldn't wait for school to come.
Forget no more. The name on the blog ain't Manic Mommy for nothing. And today, it hit me.
Today was HRH's Welcome Back Mass with the entire school present. I attended the mass because families were invited and I couldn't chance HRH being "the only kid whose mommy wasn't there" even if he didn't even know I was. So as I'm sitting in the back of the church with a few dozen other moms and two dads, I peered around to see just how small HRH looked next to his eighth grade assigned "buddy". His head barely cleared the back of the pew. My boy, my baby.
I began thinking about his anxieties about school (his perception of three timeouts on day one), about the things I'd heard about his teacher (all work, no play...not overly warm...), and about my own ideas of what his educational experience should look like. And the more I looked at Mrs. Smith with her dark corkscrew curls tied back in a severe ponytail, the deep set eyes, the unsmiling mouth, she began to morph into The Wicked Witch of the West or maybe just Miss Gulch. She held all the cards in deciding whether this first year of my child's formal education would foster his nascent love of learning and nurture his spirit.
I don't effing think so.
My protective instincts came screaming to the fore. This is my son. I am his advocate. He is brilliant and sensitive and thoughtful and mine. He is capable of great things.
I believe in our choice of school - the principal sent us a quick email day one to know that he'd visited the kindergarten classrooms and all was well. The faculty and facilities, the activities and the community are what drew us to the school. This environment is one in which HRH can thrive.
I have some qualms about his teacher but I am willing and hoping to be wrong.
I will work with or against anyone to ensure his education and his educational experience is everything he deserves it to be.
And so, Mrs. Smith and the rest of St. Somewhere, remember my face. You'll be seeing a lot of it.
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