Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A letter to my children

Dear Joshua, Ethan, and Lauren:

You're sleeping now, but in the morning it's going to happen. I wish I could stop it, save all of us from it, but I'm powerless. It's inevitable. The alarm will go off, and you will have to get up for school.

I know it seems like a cruel, heartless trick for me to come in your room at 7:00 every weekday morning and drag you out of bed when you clearly like to rise at 7:00 only on weekends, but nevertheless, I'm your mother, so I must. In the interest of retaining that last tiny little sliver of my sanity that seems to be holding on despite all odds, I have just a few requests for you.

1. I will not let you wear raggedy gym shorts to school every day. Deal with it. It's not like I make you wear a tie and wingtips. Believe it or not, cargo shorts and a nice t-shirt is not exactly formal wear. You are not the only kid in school not wearing basketball clothes, and even if you are, I don't care. Be glad you don't attend a school that requires uniforms, and be glad that your mother has not begun requiring you to wear uniforms despite that . . . yet.

2. Socks. They have seams at the end. Well, not all of them; they do make seamless socks. But, I've bought them for you more than once, and you hate them for some inexplicable reason that makes as much sense as hating polo shirts. So you're going to have to deal with the seams. You can try wearing them inside out as you often do, or you can adjust and manipulate the sock to your heart's content. But you may not - under any circumstances - take the shoe and/or sock off once it is on. I don't care if you think there is a rock the size of Gibraltar in there, there is not. There never is. So, when those shoes get fastened onto your feet, you take them off at your own risk. Your momma might get all crazy up in here, and if you miss the bus because you were "fixing" your socks again, you just might not make it to next year.

3. Lauren. Dear, sweet Lauren. Your underwear are not falling down. I do not know why every pair of pants and leggings you own makes it feel like your underpants are falling down; they are not. You pull them up until they are three inches higher than your pants, and still you insist they are falling down. They. are. not.

4. Here are your breakfast choices: oatmeal, waffles, eggs, toast, and cereal (we have the same five or six kinds of cereal we have had virtually every morning of your entire lives . . . you're not going to conjure up Lucky Charms by staring at the pantry for ten minutes). That's it. If you could begin making your choice while you're getting dressed or brushing your teeth - or even while you're walking to the kitchen - it would really speed things up. There's no reason to wait until you've looked at everything in the kitchen and asked me if you can have a yogurt pop or ice cream or a tootsie roll pop instead. Here are the cold, hard facts: the answer will NEVER be yes. So, let's not waste precious, possibly bus-missing, minutes have this conversation again.

5. Ethan. When you have your backpack and jacket and shoes on, and it's time to walk run out the door for the bus, you're going to get thirsty. How about getting a sip of water sometime before then. Just a suggestion.

6. If it's library day, don't cry to me that you "never had a chance" to read your library book. Don't ask me to read a 50 page chapter book to you at breakfast. It is your library book. With the exception of Lauren (and even she is getting pretty good), YOU CAN READ. Read your books sometime before 7:30 the morning they are due. And do not get mad at me when you don't have time to read it then.

7. There are three of you. There are two bathrooms upstairs. All of you will need to go potty. And brush your teeth. And comb your hair. If your sibling is on the toilet, perhaps you could just wait a moment or two before bursting in to brush your teeth. If your sibling is brushing his teeth, perhaps you could go pee in the other bathroom instead of yelling and crying that he won't get out because you have to go potty reeeeeaaaally bad. And perhaps - just perhaps - two of you could be in the bathroom at the same time without killing each other. Really. I'm fairly confident it won't cause sudden, painful, and immediate death if your sister combs her hair while you brush your teeth.

8. Joshua. You're not riding your bike to school. Period. I don't care how cool the bike rack is or how you're practically grown. It's not going to happen. Go ahead and get over it (again) the night before instead of in the morning.

But, hey, at least we have only 168 more school days to go. This year.

With never-ending love (even though I think you're determined to send me to the loony bin),



Eileen said...

I could swear you have been here in San Diego listening to Kyle complaining about the seams in his socks and Andrew coming downstairs *again* in his black soccer shorts and black workout jersey!! Thanks for the laugh this morning!

Rena said...

Oh wow! This makes me love home schooling even more. I do not miss all the morning rush around. I really, really don't miss searching for that missing back pack, shoe, or book that should have been put in its place by the front door the night before. I LOLed all the way through this! I hope your morning routine gets easier and no one missed the bus anymore.