At Your Service

Yesterday I went over to the school five times. And that’s with Sir Monkeypants handling the usual morning drop off.

I got a call to bring the Little Miss her forgotten library books.

I combined the book drop off with my planned visit to pick up Gal Smiley for her dentist appointment.

I hit the office again to sign Gal Smiley back in after her appointment.

Then I got a call letting me know that Gal Smiley had fallen in mud and needed new pants (for the FIFTH TIME since Easter, GROWL).

Then I got another call from the Little Miss letting me know she had a “very sore tummy” and could not possibly last the remaining 45 minutes of the school day (totally fine once we got home, of course).

And then I had to go back less than an hour later to pick up the big kids at the end of the day.

I’d also like to mention, for maximum sympathy points, that it was pouring rain and about six degrees and every single time I went out my coat and pants got wetter and colder, and I must say I got to feeling rather trodden upon.

Between lost things and forgotten things and falling in mud, and literally a dozen separate dentist and doctor’s appointments in April, I have seen more of the office staff at my kids’ school this month than I have in the entire preceding eight years they’ve been pupils there. It used to be I could go into the office and no one had any idea who I was. Now I show up and they just ask me if it’s the Captain, Gal Smiley, or the Little Miss today. Or at least, which kid for this particular visit – and we’ll see you again in an hour.

Sometimes I feel as though as long as I am here to catch them, they’ll never learn to stand on their own. I should put my foot down, and declare that I am no longer available during the day except for health emergencies. I should tell them they have to learn to manage their own gear and issues and life.

Sometimes I feel like it’s nice to have a safety net. At least for a little while.

Guess I’ll stay on call for a bit longer, at least.

7 thoughts on “At Your Service

  1. Middle-aged Me

    Lynn, from this post I can tell that you are a very caring person; go ahead and let your kids feel that you are there for them, that’s what makes the occasional guilt trip so darn effective! But I understand your predicament because there are lots of days that i feel like my kids could really use a bigger helping of the ‘resilience factor’ that old-fashioned 1970’s neglectful parenting sure dumped on me.

  2. Gosh, I struggle with this too. I think “if they have no consequences, they’ll never learn” and at the same time I say “in a short few years they’ll leave me and won’t need me anymore”…

    I hear you. And you deserve extra pie for that. 🙂

  3. You’ll know when you have to draw the line. With me it was when my son kept complaining about some vague eye complaint, which meant I had to return to the school to pick him up multiple times, but when I finally took him to the doctor he screamed like a banshee and wouldn’t let her within five feet of his eye.

    I said “You don’t let her look, you don’t get picked up from school for this anymore.” Then I took him back to school and told the office staff I would no longer be responding to calls about the mysterious eye complaint.

    The calls stopped and several years later he has 20 / 20 vision …

  4. smothermother

    with both of us working outside of the home, the jellybean doesn’t have much of a choice. he better be really sick if the school is going to call. missed library? I guess you’ll have to read those books again this week. fell in a puddle of mud? i guess you’ll be digging in the lost and found bin for some dry clothes. dentist/doctor appointments are all scheduled in the summer when both he and the hubby are off school. only having one car also enforces this. I struggle with guilt when I know he just wants to stay home because he is feeling a bit off because I have to go into the office. unless he is puking or has lost a limb, the kid is getting on the bus in the morning. and it’s not even the hubby or I doing it, it’s our neighbour.

    absentee patenting much? *sigh* it’s building character, right?

  5. I often wonder if those of us who work from home get more calls… as they know we have flexible schedules??? that said, I have NEVER got a call about forgotten library books. guaranteed they wouldn’t call a parent at their office with this. Books are forgotten means my son doesn’t get to take new books out. lesson learned.

    as for the ‘sick’ issue.. always a tough one.. but again, I would guess your flexibility” adds to this as well.

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