R.L. SAUNDERS

writer attempting real life in the middle of everybody else's vacation

Preschool: Take 2

on August 20, 2012

I just dropped off my youngest child for his first day of preschool this year. Last year we pulled him out of a religious school for several reasons, including, well, religion. I wrote about that here:  rlsaunders.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/boogers-for-jesus/ I’m sorry I don’t know how to make a prettier link to it like a fancy, serious blogger would.

So this year he’s going to the same charter school that my daughter attends and loves. LOVES.

The little guy is using the same backpack and the same shoes that he used last year (they looked like clown shoes a year ago). Oh, and he’s using the same toilet habits, too. Some of the younger parents were weepy today because they were leaving their babies at school for the first time. Me? I was the oldest parent there, and I’ve done this too many times to even fake sad. The only thing I felt anxious about was the mortifying thought–and genuine possibility–that my son will come out of the preschool bathroom with his pants down and yell, “Teacher! I’m done!” a la “Lucy! I’m home!”

http://www.wavsource.com/snds_2012-08-19_1379303454069823/tv/i_love_lucy/home.wav

This morning when I was going down the list of school day reminders (use your inside voice, be patient, share) we got to DO NOT ask the teacher to wipe your butt. He appeared to give it some serious consideration, then said, “Okay, well…no thank you about that choice.” It was very polite.

Alright, kid, learn the hard way.

Say what you want, or judge silently. I don’t care. I mean, it’s not like we haven’t been working on it. Wipe. Pull up pants. Flush. Wash hands. But a parent’s concern about butt rash too often overtakes a parent’s concern for timely self-reliance in the bathroom. So yeah, I still do an inspection, and sometimes (okay, almost always) I am compelled to pull out the baby wipes and redo his work.

Am I nuts? Am I alone? Be gentle. Because I really am trying, and I’m sensitive.

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10 responses to “Preschool: Take 2

  1. Bridgette says:

    You are not alone! We have been having thy same discussion!

  2. Sounds like perfect parenting, to me. He’ll learn that particular skill when he learns it. He’s a baby. I’m bringing my daughter to school Wednesday. She does a great job on her own in the bathroom. The same child who breastfed forever. Who fell apart every time she scraped her knee or bumped her elbow. Who didn’t sleep through the night until she was 3. Oh! Did I mention she’s going into her 2nd year of college? Your son will be fine and you are clearly an amazing mom.

  3. You are not alone. This sounds like my youngest too.

    And, by the way, we desperately need you to write a national newspaper column. If I were a NYT’s editor, I’d be beating my way to your door right now.

  4. Emily Saso says:

    This post has made it official: I am far too afraid of poop to ever be a mom.

  5. rhondasaunders says:

    The Universe is set up so that you can tolerate your own kids’ poop. I don’t understand it, but it’s true.

    • I concur with Rhonda. For some reason your kid’s poop can even be kind of cute (or at least not horrifying) whereas all other poop (including your best friend’s kid’s) is still just disgusting poop. Just one of those amazing little tricks of evolution to make sure we don’t just leave the baby in the road the first time it does something gross.

  6. Sally Oh says:

    Argh. Something else I totally fucked up.

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