How can it be? Just a few minutes ago I was hovered over my bathroom counter deciphering the positive read on the three pregnancy tests I had just taken (hey, I wanted to be extra sure). Before I knew it, I was listening to my newborn baby boy let out his very first cries. And then, BOOM, I blink and the next thing I know, I’m hauling three kids up and down every shoe store in a fifty mile radius’s aisles searching for school shoes for not just one but two of my children. It really might be an out of body experience type phenomenon. And you know what . . . I. Don’t. Like. It.
Yes, it was hard when my oldest began his first day of K-4, but I could handle it because I still had one boy at home and a precious baby girl on the way to keep me busy and preoccupied. Plus, my big boy still had a hint of that adorable baby chunkiness on those rosy cheeks. But here we are staring first grade straight in the eyes, and I’m a mess. Let me tell you a few reasons why I don’t want my child to go to first grade.
- First grade marks the official end of the baby(ish) stage and the beginning of a new era—Kidhood. I might have made up that word. But the meaning is real. My child is officially a kid. An elementary aged kid. Why must they grow up?Sobs uncontrollably in the corner.
- First grade means I’m an old mom. Okay so I might not be all that old in age, but I’m no longer a new mom, and my brain cells have been gradually disappearing since the beginning. I’m six years into this gig, and it’s beginning to show. By the way, has anyone seen my dentures? Kidding…
- I’m not ready for mean kids. In preschool and Kindergarten, the children don’t seem to notice or care about differences. The “awkward” child who eats his own boogers doesn’t have to worry about ridicule or not being included in the cool kid club. Boogers ARE cool after all. But in first grade the kids seem to start noticing “unique qualities” more. They may not be totally mean yet, but the transformation has begun! Lord help me not to
hurtpummel a mean kid who makes my child cry. And my own child better pray for mercy if HE is the mean kid.
- The homework and tests. Need I say more? There’s this ongoing myth that homework and tests are solely for the children. And yet somehow the parents are the only ones who look like they’ve scaled Mt. Everest in the dead of winter on the hit TV show “Naked and Afraid” after just one of these homework sessions.
- All those extracurricular activities. As if life isn’t crazy enough, now my child wants to join his friends in playing rec league ball. So on top of everything else going on, somehow we must squeeze in practices and games five nights a week if we want to be “good parents” with “well-rounded children.” It’s a conspiracy.
So it’s settled. No first grade EVER. And on that note, you’ll see me bright and early Monday morning with the rest of the first grade parents. But you can’t make me like it!