Because I’ve been busy playing rodeo clown the past few days to screaming, squealing, emotionally unstable kiddos, I have been unable to meet the demands of reading everyone’s brilliant, insightful, hilarious and cerebral blog posts. I tried last night, but pretty soon it started feeling like homework, so I just quit. I actually feel guilty when I don’t keep up on my reading. It’s part terror that I’m missing out on something awesome, and part self-loathing because a good member of the blogging community would keep up her end of the bargain to read other bloggers’ posts. But you know what? I know none of you care, so I’m just going to stop talking now.
In other news, I got a subbing call at the last minute yesterday morning to come fill in for a kindergarten teacher. I had already rejected the job the night before. I wanted to sleep in. But when I got two phone calls back to back, one from the principal herself pleading with me to come in, I knew I had to go. I only had 4 hours of sleep, but I put my big girl panties on and went in anyway.
It was the 100th Day of School. We had to make Froot Loop necklaces and wear our 100 Day hats and do dot to dot pictures using numbers 1 to 100. We had to have meltdowns because we missed Mom. We had to push, shove, and shout at other children when we felt frustrated. We had to yell at the substitute teacher because she was “doing it wrong”. We had to writhe around on the floor in futile attempts to get our snowpants on. You know… the usual. And yet, this time, instead of being all…
I was all…
I could hardly get annoyed at them. They can’t help it that they’re big personalities stuck in teeny-tiny, uncoordinated bodies with little self-control and even fewer coping skills. I mean, you can hardly fault them for it.
So, instead of freaking out over the schedule and the list of things to do, I just took a step back and let them be. I watched the wonderfully weird dance of kindergarteners trying to figure out who they were, and what was happening, and why they were stuck in a classroom full of crazy people. It’s strange watching little kids trying to navigate their ways in social situations that are all brand new to them with individuals they don’t quite understand. It’s even funnier when you spot the kids who already have such big personalities that you can pretty much gauge who they will be as grownups.
There’s Henry*, who is easily the most popular kid in class. The girls LOOOOVE him, the boys want to hang out with him, and the teacher can’t help but appreciate his quick wittedness. He’s hilarious and smart and cute as a button, and he does not yet understand that one day he will be the star quarterback and prom king and voted most popular kid ever.
There’s Amber*, who walks around in her cowboy boots, calling the shots and telling it like it is – so self-assured and full of confidence that she doesn’t yet recognize. And yet, everyone likes her, respects her and listens to her. She’s a little Megyn Kelly in the making.
There’s Calvin*, the soft-spoken philanthropist, and Marcie*, the put-upon but patient caretaker, and Betty*, the diva who is destined to marry rich because she just can’t even. And of course, none of them see this in themselves… but if you take a step back to watch and listen, you can see their personalities slowly being shaped. It’s amazing and hilarious and oh-so-much-fun.
So, the next time I have a class full of crazy people, I’m going to step back and watch the weirdness of growing up. It’s much more fun than worrying about the to-do list.
*Names have been changed to protect the guilty.