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Month: September 2021

Guilt Level – High

My guilt level is off the charts. My kid is sad at school, my parents are sick at their home, and I am riding my Peloton listening for inspiring quotes. Related note: the most inspiring quote I heard was one from Alex Toussaint the other day, which was something along the lines of, “Perform like you are in front of a sold out room.” I love this quote, and I think my mom would too. I have this mindset already most of the time. If you know me in real life, have seen me perform, and are thinking, “Really?” just know that what you have seen is indeed the upper limits of my talents.

Anyway, the other day I resolved that by the time my kid is old enough to be asked the question, “What do your parents do?” my daughter will respond, “My mom tells jokes.” And the person inquiring will respond, “Okay, but what does she really do?” and my kid will say, “She’s a comedian!” I will also accept, “Clown!”

Now that I sit back and think about this goal, I realize it’s telling that I didn’t aspire to be so successful that no one needs to even ask my daughter what I do. For the record, I do aspire to be that successful, but I think it’s good to manage my own expectations.

Back to guilt! So I feel very guilty because the school told my daughter that the reason I cannot come to school with her is that I need to work. And I am not working right now. But I am lying to my daughter about going to work. Every morning I tell her I have to go to work, and that is why I cannot come to drop-off or school. The school specifically recommended I not come to drop off, which has been a good recommendation for all of us.

I also feel guilty because my mom got three bug bites on her palm, and rather than go over and argue with her about letting me help with my dad, I stayed home, and I opened the washing machine dryer, I took out pants and a shirt, and then closed the dryer door and walked away. I left the clean laundry in there! Then I walked downstairs, and I took one clean plate out of the dishwasher with the clean plates to have a piece of cake, and then I closed that dishwasher, full of clean dishware. I felt really bad about that too.

Is this self-care? It feels kind of awful.

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School Drop-off 4

Yesterday after school she said she liked school and she caught the rain! She seemed shaky but genuinely better than the day before.
This morning she woke up and said, “I don’t like school.” And then holding back tears, she said, “I don’t want to go to school.”
The holding back tears is the hardest to see, hear, and feel inside.

David held her for a while too as she continued to tell us that there are too many kids on the playground and school is hard. Then David drove her to school on his own because the school thought that would be better than both of us coming. The director recommended we get her there earlier so she could setting in with the kids, and so we did this morning. And in retrospect we thought we should have done that on day one too, so she could watch the other kids come in and not be the last person joining an established group.

When we pick her up, we bombard her with questions about school, and now I completely understand why parents do this. A while ago my sister was complaining that my mom kept asking her what she had for lunch. “I had a sandwich, mom! I mean who cares!?” But I totally get it. I don’t care what my sister had for lunch, but I want to know EXACTLY what my daughter had for lunch, how it tasted, how much she ate, where she ate it, who she sat next to, what it was wrapped in, what she drank, what utensils she used. I WANT TO KNOW IT ALL! I want to know what they talked about at circle time, what they did for play, what the library looks like, who the other kids are, what they are like, whether they poop in school, if diapers are changed standing up, truly no detail is too small for me.

Right now we ask how school was, and she thinks really hard, and then replies through her wet eyelashes, “Good!” But then she looks off to the distance and looks back and says, “I cried a lot.”

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School Drop-off 3

The school director this morning shared that she had been crying all day for the past two days.

We were like, “Oh, you mean, for a while after drop-off? Or like the morning?” and she replied, “No, all day. The teachers remind her to breath, she breathes, and then she starts crying again.”

We suspected as much, but it still did not feel great.
I really did not expect school to go this way. Part of me thought the school would tell us she was so advanced they would move her up to the older class, and I would feign modesty.

Anyway, the director shared that this is the first time she is not getting what she wants, and it is very difficult.
“What does she want?” I asked.
“You two.”

Today at pickup her voice still sounded hoarse, but she seemed more cheery. So we are hoping it’s getting better. And she told me she liked school, she played, and she caught the rain, which was great, because this morning she kept repeating, “I don’t like school!”

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