Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in preschool anymore.
I’m not the mother I expected to be.
Every day it feels like there is something else to sign up for, a new request for parent participation. It hurts every time I see the “I am interesting in participating in XYZ” signature line, and have to move past it.
I get it, the schools are depressingly under-funded, so the teachers have to rely on parental involvement. Plus, having parents who are actively involved in their child’s education is important.
I am stretched too thin right now to participate in the ways I expect of myself. I hear about the parents who volunteer in the classroom. The parents who show up to each event.
I can’t keep up.
I signed up to be on the communications committee (My degree! I can use it!) and then had to email the leader and say that I just couldn’t commit, because reasons.
It doesn’t help that the smells, lights, and long hallways of a school send me into some sort of failure flashback. I was, shall we say, not the best student. But you know the one thing I did well? I participated. Even when I didn’t do the work, and really didn’t know what was going on, I could bullshit my way through class participation to a degree that left the teachers and those who liked to cheat off my papers shocked when I failed the written tests.
And now I’m failing to even participate. I would say I think the other parents are judging me, except that would imply they have knowledge of my existence. I don’t hang around with them making awkward small talk while we wait for the bell to ring, because I don’t show until 5:30. I don’t go to PTA meetings because they are during the work day.
I never knew that Kindergarten would be so overwhelming! I wonder if this is a byproduct of the learn-more-faster legislation that is suffocating our kids. Because it certainly feels suffocating. Was it always like this? Maybe my mom will weigh in in the comments.
I want to end on some sort of empowering “it’s okay!” and “we can do the thing!” note, but honestly, I’m not there yet.