So we’re comin’ in hot to “Meet the Teacher” night from a week at the beach because what else would prime you to the point of combustion than a 3 hour drive with 3 exhausted kids, 2 exhausted parents, and one large dog? The baby has pissed in his car seat because quite frankly when we stopped at the McDonalds we totally forgot to take him to the bathroom. I mean we were a tad distracted with the 5 year old who beelined to the playground and the 7 year old who had an absolute meltdown because the toy offered in the Happy Meal was no longer from “The Secret Life of Pets” and “HOW AM I GONNA FINISH MY COLLECTION NOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWW?!?!”
We make it to the house and send the kids inside while we unload the car in the sweltering heat. Its at least “Forty nine eleventy” degrees as my 5 YO informs me. Yeah….I’m aware of that kid now get your finger out of your nose and start carrying something.
I manage to put them out for naps that are just long enough for them to play in bed for an hour and fall asleep for 35 seconds before we have to get ready to go to the Eaglet Extravaganza/Meet the Teacher/ The 7th Ring of Hell in Dante’s Inferno.
The baby screams bloody freaking murder the entire way to the school which should normally only take us about 20 minutes but since they have been repaving our road for THE LAST 3 FREAKING MONTHS it now takes us at least 40. So we crank up the Laurie Berkner CD to try and drown out his wails. He sees this as a challenge and accepts boldly crescendoing to a decibel level that I’m certain will break the windows at any given moment.
We make it to the school along with 70 billion other families and it takes the two of us to manhandle the baby into the stroller as he shrieks and arches his back with superhuman strength. We have to park in Guam as we are late and there are no more parking spaces and hike the rest of the way into school with Eeny and Meeny screeching that their backpacks are too heavy to carry. By the time we make it to the 2 mile long line in the sweltering heat we are beginning to turn on each other.
We wait in the check in line, then we wait in the transportation line, then the lunch money line, and then the “Oh look! They have snow cones” line. The only good part about this endeavor so far is that we live in a tiny rural town so it’s more like social hour as I meet and greet all of my friends (well, my kids’ friends’ moms). I run into an old friend I haven’t seen in a few years and I happily wave to her.
“Hi!!!!! How are you?!”
She distractedly stares right through me.
“I’m fine,” she says. But I’m thinking she may not recognize me judging by the blank look on her face.
“Are you? You look a little weird,” I poke at her.
At this point she begins to tell me of a horrible, unspeakable tragedy that has befallen her family. Out of respect for her I will not elaborate but suffice it to say I felt the need to crawl under a rock for my lack of tact. I make polite, awkward conversation until I can extract myself and we make our way to the kindergarten wing.
We meet Meeny’s teacher and I fake our way through the scavenger hunt that he wants nothing to do with. I watch all the other kindergartners happily locating the American flag, the calendar, and the restroom while my child pulls every single box of toys of the shelf and systematically empties them on to the carpet.
When it’s time to head to the 2nd grade classroom I find Miny playing with a toy vacuum from the Home-Life Center and tell him to put it back. He refuses. Before I even know what’s happening I am in a tug-of-war with this man child over the plastic vacuum. I mean seriously how is it even possible for a 2 year old to be that strong. Before it’s said and done with I am on the floor full on wrestling him while Eeny tries to pry the vacuum from his death grip. By the time we overcome him he has resumed his blood curdling scream and is writhing in my arms as I cheerily wave to the teacher and say “We’ll see you on Wednesday!!”
The whole room is silent, mouths agape staring at us as we make our way out the door. “The Evans are here ya’ll. Behold.”
Things are unraveling quickly by the time we make it to the 2nd grade classroom which isn’t even remotely as entertaining as the K5 room. I’m trying desperately to fill out the “About my child” paperwork while Meeny screams that “THIS CLASS IS BOOOOORIN’” and “I WANNA GO TO MY CLASS”.
The teacher smiles and says “Wow, I don’t know how you do it with 3 kids so close in age.”
“I drink a lot” I reply flatly immediately sorry for saying it. Sometimes I forget that when people don’t know me they don’t get my humor. Well, as far as first impressions go I think I pretty much nailed this one.
The boys finally devolve to the point that the hubs has to take them to the car while I try to salvage any remaining shreds of dignity and politely ask if I might just finish the paperwork at home. Wide eyed and with a huge fake smile plastered on her face (only thinly veiling her horror) the teacher assures me that would be fine.
We are finally all in the car, I call in an order for takeout Chinese, and we head directly to the grocery store to pick up booze to counteract the horror of our evening. By the time we make it to the grocery store we are having one of those “Nothing Fights”. You know the inane bickering. The “why didn’t you just let me out at the door” “Well I wanted to park right here, am I doing it wrong?” “Well we were sitting right at the door I could’ve just jumped out” “I’m in the 2nd dang parking spot it’s 10 feet away!!!” You catch my drift.
I grab 2 bottles of wine and a case of beer and we head to the Chinese restaurant. The end is in sight. We have the 10 minute drive home (assuming the road crew is off for the night) and we can plop them in front of their iPads with some Chinese and catch our breath.
About 5 miles from home the baby grabs his crotch and screams because dammit if we didn’t forget to take him potty again. We are both screaming to “HOLD IT, JUST WAIT, PULL OVER!!!!” When we swerve into a gravel parking lot. I yank the baby from his carseat and pull him to the side of the road while fumbling with the snaps on his jumper. I get the underwear pulled down and am precariously balancing him at a 90 degree angle to the ground while in my *calmest* voice saying “Okay baby, you can make the pee pee come out now.”
I ignore the passing cars as my sunglasses fall into the pee-soaked grass. “Good job buddy” I say as I wipe my hands on my shorts. Back into the car we go and back at home in a flash. The kids eat and are sent straight to bed because “it’s really late you guys”. Thank God they still can’t tell time.
And that my friends is how we kick off a school year. Cheers ya’ll…..cheers.
If you like this check out some of my other escapades in My Suburban is a WMD: A Christmas Story or I’m having an emergency.