School days, school days…

As I glanced around me, the faces on each individual held expressions that you could only expect on a day like today.

Well, today and MAYBE if the newspapers that morning had run an announcement about impending Armageddon.

Glazed over eyes- some red, some watery, some a little of both- with a painted on expression of calm, (purely for the sake of the kids, of course) but any other parent knows that simmering just below the surface raged fear, terror, sadness, and just the slightest hint of nausea.

Welcome to the first day of school.  More importantly, welcome to the first day of kindergarten., where the recruits are pint sized and the basics of survival include writing your name and knowing your colors.
Yes, I’m comparing kindergarten to the military. Even though the little guys (and gals) aren’t very imposing -with their baby faces and backpacks half their size- taking a look around the orientation room, you’d think we were sending our babies off to war.

Parents drifted in and out of consciousness, only occasionally showing signs of life, wringing their hands, tapping their feet, and continually checking their watches, trying to pass the time til we would be allowed to rejoin our little kindergarteners back in the classroom.

Suddenly, we were given the “GO” to head back.

Like runners at the start of a race, many parents jumped up with a speed that Flo Jo would have envied.

As I made my way to the door, I heard one mom say,”…she was never in preschool, so she’s probably shell-shocked and wondering where I am. I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s in tears.” I can see her nervously laughing, but her eyes give away a wild kind of look- like a mother lion rushing to get back to her cub before poachers take it away.

The last one to file into the classroom, I almost burst out laughing. None of those kids missed us. They were sitting on their colored carpet squares, listening to ‘The Kissing Hand’, and playing with their neighbor who was sitting closest to them.

Of course, despite their content children, the nervous, frantic look the parents wore made me wonder whether or not they were going to give themselves 40 lashings for letting their tiny tots out of view.

I know I come off as sarcastic and a little mean (I wouldn’t be me if I wasn’t), and I get it. Its scary to see your baby grow up- I’m not denying that. I remember being new at the whole “first day” thing. I laugh because it just hit me what I must’ve looked like.

Of course, that was when my little guppie was entering a puddle.

Today I let e guppie go and watched as my oldest went from puddle to pond- Jr. High.

But, I have to tell you all- I was brave. I wasn’t like the rest. I was a pro. No tears here. I took my mandatory “first day of school” pics and waved to him as he headed out the door with his friends.

I only hugged him once…

twice…

ok, so it was 3 times.

I was totally and completely in control of my emotions as I asked him over and over if he had everything he needed , and I think I did a pretty good job at hiding fear when I reminded him to call me right after school.

Yup, I kept it cool as a cucumber.

Up until I saw that it was 1, realized that he’d had a half day and was supposed to get out by 12:55, and ended up calling him…

…during his last few minutes of school; frantic, wondering if he had been swallowed up by a larger fish.

FYI- your clocks at home DO NOT necessarily reflect school time.

You know- in case you were wondering.

Friday’s Writing Prompt: My son’s heroes

Mama’s Losin’ It
Mama’s Losing It: 1.) Write about a time you or someone you know saved the day!

he·ro/ˈhi(ə)rō/Noun
1. A person, typically a man, who is admired for courage or noble qualities.

When you’re young, teachers will sometimes ask you to write about your hero.

For some, that hero might be a professional athlete. For others, they might write about police and fire men and women. Some might even write about all those men and women overseas that are putting their lives on the line to maintain our freedom.

I’ve met firemen and women, police men and women- I even have people near and dear to me that are off at war right now.

And, while I question idolizing athletes and calling THEM heroes, I think its safe to say that a hero can be found almost anywhere…

…I just never thought that I would be considered a hero.

When my oldest son, Cameron, was a toddler, we went to visit my parents after church one Sunday. I remember that my mom hadn’t been home, but my dad was there. I was actually really happy about that because my husband and I had just gotten a new computer and I wanted to tell my dad -a computer know-it-all, in my eyes- all about it.

When we got in the front door, I set Camo on the living room floor and went to talk with my dad who was near the kitchen. I couldn’t see Camo (there was a couch in my view), but considering that we were in front of the door that led out to the back yard, I wasn’t worried. I laughed to myself that the most he would be able to do is destroy their TV equipment.

I thought.

I was just responding to my dad’s question about RAM when we couldn’t hear Camo anymore. We weren’t worried- like I said, we were in front of the only accessible door to the back yard- but we just wanted to make sure he wasn’t destroying a bit more than TV equipment.

When we couldn’t find him in any of the bedrooms, we got a little worried, but we weren’t panicking. Like I said, we were in front of the only accessible door to the back yard, and my parents room had been closed to keep him out.

After rechecking the rooms, though, my dad asked me if I thought he could have gone in the back yard. How, though? He rushed out to the backyard while I rechecked their room which had a door to the backyard.

Nope- the slider and the curtain covering it had been closed. Wouldn’t he have left the door open if he had gone out that way?

That’s when I heard my dad scream my name.

He was pulling Camo out of their fishpond.

Ya know, when you take CPR courses, you never ACTUALLY think you’ll have to use them. Most sane people only take them ‘just in case’. That was the day I found out that CPR really does save lives.

While my dad called 9-1-1, I continued to try and get my baby to breathe. He finally did right before the paramedics showed up.

So, that day, there were actually quite a few heroes and angels in the mix- my dad and I were just a couple.

Some people might chastise me by saying,”Well, you and your dad wouldn’t have had to save your son if you had kept a better eye on him.” Maybe that’s true.

And, maybe we should have expected a 1 1/2 year old to be able to open a closed door EVEN THOUGH he was always too lazy to even look under a blanket for his shoes.

And, maybe we –I– shouldn’t have assumed he hadn’t gone into a room simply because the door had been closed- ALL the doors had been closed- leading out to the back yard, EVEN THOUGH he had never closed a door a day in his life.

And, maybe my parents were stupid and foolish to have a pond in their back yard knowing full well that they had a grandson EVEN THOUGH hundreds and thousands of adults buy homes SPECIFICALLY looking for homes with pools EVEN THOUGH kids have DIED in pool related accidents over the years and I don’t see anyone saying that those people are fool hardy.

(And, FYI- even if your pond/pool is above ground, did you know its still a drowning hazard? Its true! Trust me- if a 1 1/2 year old has the piece of mind to cover his tracks and close all the doors behind him, then they can DEFINITELY climb steps/ stairs/what not to get into it. Just a thought.)

So, what could most definitely have turned out to be a tragedy, wasn’t, because -with a few angels watching out for us- my dad and I became my son’s heroes that day.

Too bad he doesn’t treat me as such anymore, but whatev.