I know, I know - Back to School always kills me. Every stinkin' year. You'd think, with 18 of these under my belt, I'd know that when I start to feel like I'm totally going to lose my cool all over the damned street, I should just take a step back and reflect and take a day or two. But! Like clockwork, every year - I'm on this blog, complaining like crazy. Just go with it, peoples. I'll be better - no, not better,not sane, but less crazy - by maybe the end of September.
I'm crazy because I have too much in my mind.
Tonight, when I stood in the shower and bitched and complained - out loud, to myself, with no audience - I decided to just let it all out. I was feeling very overwhelmed, frazzled and irritated at virtually everyone. Instead of bottling it up and then striking out - my typical M.O. - I just let loose and let spew.
It was a thing of beauty, those words dropping out of my mouth. Flying out with the accuracy of bullets would be more precise.
I've been feeling overwhelmed lately and I figured out why - it's because I'm expected - just like so very many of us, and I would venture to say, really ALL women - to do and know and say and respond and handle damned near every single thing about every single aspect of everything that we might touch, encounter, raise, teach, care for or be in charge of, be it a house, job, living creature, child, husband, parent -
you get what I'm saying.
Man, do I love the run on sentences.
Back to school is even more fraught with those things.
I did my first official 504 meeting - up until now, we've been at private school and it's handled differently. It was - an experience. I have had to do nurse visits and remember medication forms and asthma forms and go buy the stupid inhalers (those blamed things expire if you look at them crosseyed) and get epi pens and avi Q's in sets, plural. I'm responsible for making sure those kids are immunized, fed, clothed, wearing shoes - and they must be matching, the audacity - AND SOCKS.
And make sure no one forgot to wear deodorant.
I'm supposed to know that one needs 6 composition books (must be college ruled) and one will only use wide ruled paper and this one cannot possibly have the teacher that almost caused a nervous breakdown last year. Dont forget the notes to allow water bottles in the class and don't forget to buy multiple small bottles of Advil for each kid - and definitely don't forget the note granting permission. I'm supposed to know where I hid the bag of uniforms I haven't needed for three years - note: I still can't find it and I don't care anymore.
Please sign every form. Fill in every space, volunteer for every opportunity. I definitely should attend every open house, back to school, parent social, information meeting, book sale, PTA meeting, art festival, PE demo, be a room parent, send in gifts and work bingo. Cheerfully, damnit. Don't do it if you aren't cheerful.
I am supposed to remember the location of every.single.thing in my house and be able to lay my hands on it at any given notice. I'm supposed to remember that this one loves shrimp but another is allergic, one loves red peppers but not green and don't dare try to give this one Cheerios. I'm supposed to know the correct temperature to wash - AND DRY - every item of clothing in our house and find it in the dark, on the way out the door, with one hand tied behind my back on a day that Mercury is in retrograde.
Want to know how much laundry detergent/cereal/milk/spinach/floor polish/shampoo/chicken broth we have? Just ask me - I'm supposed to know within a millimeter. How did you possibly let us run out of laundry soap?? Want to know what's on the calendar next September 27? I'm supposed to know that too.
How many towels are under the sink? Who uses the special soap? Where can I find index cards, get a paper laminated, and where are the scissors? ASK ME.
Ladies, don't forget to work out for your health (and to stay slim), get your hair/nails/waxing done, buy cute clothes, learn how to do makuep, and wear the right shoes. Go to church and be active in your faith. If you have kids, make sure they say their prayers and model good behavior. Keep sweaters, wipes, extra food and changes of clothes on hand for anyone, for any situation.
Carry safety pins, too.
Remember to keep the sexy thoughts close by, so you can grab them right when you need them - but never, ever be too busy to drop everything and listen with both ears and total focus to the world's MOST meandering recitation of This one time, at recess? My friend... and the most boring play by play of your significant other's Monday morning 8 a.m. meeting - the very one you've heard about twice already, Keep a smile on while you do it, too.
And be ready to vomit the entire conversation back verbatim when asked.
Get everyone up, dressed appropriately, fed, out the door to school or work, home, fed, homeworked, exercised, showered, medicated, listened to, tucked in and out cold. Listen to the crisis du jour for each one, dispense wisdom and justice and courage and laughter, wipe tears and boo boos and support in times of anger and angst and sorrow and hilarity.
This doesn't even count the stuff I'm in charge of for work.
No wonder I'm crazy. I take heart, though - I think all of us are equally crazy.