As I mentioned earlier this week, I drove my kids to school for more years than I would like to remember or count and I have recently found myself back in the role of chauffeur once again. I’m having flashbacks of all sorts which has caused a short circuit in my brain resulting in some of the most complex and confusing run-on sentences ever created. Here are the things that I do not miss about school drop offs and pick ups:
- Sitting in line for 15 minutes waiting for the staff to come out only to have to wait an additional few minutes while the person at the front of the line proceeds to have a lengthy, emotional good-bye conversation with their child complete with darling student climbing over the seat to hug and kiss mom good bye before having to flip back into the back seat, bulky backpack and all, to climb out the car door, which she is too small to open on her own, requiring the staff member to finally head over to assist the student while the rest of us who were parked in sidewalk range have let our passengers out of our cars and are just waiting to get out of the blasted parking lot (because quite frankly, the reason we were waiting for 15 minutes was because we wanted to get near the beginning of the line so we could just get out quickly!)
- The crossing guard who stands with one foot on the sidewalk and the other in the street holding the stop sign at a slightly outstretched/partially raised level, looking as if she is going to step out in front of you at any second to stop traffic and let people cross so you slow down to let her know that you see that she might be in motion and she just stands there frozen in that confusing position while staring RIGHT at you so you slowly coast past her (and the large group of parents, children, younger siblings who have gathered next to her on the sidewalk) giving them all a timid (and hopefully friendly) smile.
- Having to tell your own darling child that “No, you cannot play on the dirt pile” with the other kids whose parents obviously don’t care if their kids walk in covered from head to toe in a fine coating of dust and dirt….and having to repeat the answer each and every time of the 25 times that your child asks in that 15 minute period while waiting for staff to come out and drop off to officially begin. (And why exactly is there a pile of dirt conveniently located next to sidewalk in the drop off/pick up area anyway??)
- The soft voice of the two year old behind you telling you all of his innermost thoughts and feelings and not being able to decipher a single word!
- Having your child stare at you blankly when the time has arrived for him to depart the car after the endless 15 minute wait and after being told by you no less than five times that “When I tell you it’s time to go, grab your backpack and get out of the car” in the last 2 minutes and when he finally does begin to move, his every action is in slow motion…..(with you cringing in anticipation of impatient beeping horns coming from the cars behind you then realizing they won’t come because those people are also trying to shoo their own kids out of their cars- phew!)
- Hitting a few red lights and pokey traffic so that you are running behind (which is still before the actual drop off time because you’re a little bit anal that way) reaching the school parking lot too late to pull in leaving you on the street with your left turn signal on waiting to turn in when the line starts to move but each time you think you’ll be able to make that turn, oncoming cars turn right and fill up the line so you are stuck out on the street and when the line has moved and there are no oncoming cars five families of different assortments (parents, parents with strollers, kids on bikes, kids walking, toddlers running, kids running to the edge of the sidewalk only to come to a screeching halt when their parents yell at them to stop) approach the crosswalk SO by the time they all cross safely to the other side, there is traffic coming from the other direction AGAIN….which is why we will be leaving even earlier tomorrow morning—oh wait- it’s Saturday!
Needless to say, this is why, when my kids were in school I parked down the street and made them walk over and find the car!
I need to run now. It’s time for me to rouse Beej from his nap so I can get him settled into his car seat so we can be first in line at pick up! (I sure hope Cj doesn’t get on the bus by mistake!)