I got the biggest compliment from my friend Corey this morning. We, along with our families and a few hundred other families of K through 6-ers, were gathered in front of Park Day School waiting for The First Day of School to officially start. She told me she actually checked my blog last night to see if I had posted any words of wisdom regarding The First Day of School. I always feel bad when people tell me they’ve checked the blog, but I was terribly flattered, and now of course, with exactly one First Day of School under my belt, I DO feel qualified to dispense advice. Shocker!
So here it is. Parents in general seem far too concerned about what their children will wear on the First Day of School. It is really not that big a deal what your kid wears, and if you make a big deal about it, you are likely to stress the kid out. Incidentally, Clem ALMOST wore a dress for The First Day of School, a cute little homemade number I bought her on Etsy in attempt to wean us off The Crap. (When I showed her the dress last weekend, she said, and this is verbatim: “Mommy, I really like it! Wow! I always never like what you buy me!”) But she changed her mind, and wore her Small Paul shirt instead, which of course resulted in her wearing the EXACT SAME SHIRT as some blond third grader. I believe a better mom would have asked the third grader to change so Clem could feel unique. I am not that mom.
Anyhoo…my point is that many parents, and here I mean me, carefully consider their kids’ attire and totally neglect THEIR OWN OUTFITS. I should have had my own little Back To School spree and chosen something casual and flattering DAYS in advance. I should have laid it out on the dresser the night before. I should have had a ribbon, or at least one of those trendy fabric-covered hairbands, for my hair. Instead, I realized 15 minutes before departure time that my favorite jeans were still in the dryer, along with my new capris. At this point, I made a difficult decision: with no margin for tardiness, several morning tasks still to be performed, and a fashion crisis, something was going to have to give. And while I spent the day praying I could conceal this fact, I will now, in that bloggy, stupid sort of way, reveal that I consiously decided not to brush my teeth.
In retrospect, I should have brushed my teeth and just gone in my sweatpants, because what I ended up wearing was new and untested and made me look horribly frumpy anyway. And my breath was probably unbearable. Not the impression you want to make on your new fellow Kindergarten moms and dads, who are checking you out much more than they are the kids. Or I’m paranoid and they’re not checking the other parents out at all, but it really doesn’t matter because you think they are and you feel all self-conscious. The point is that what they say is true: the kids are fine, it’s the parents who are a mess. It’s just in my case, I wasn’t a mess about Clem, who was clearly completely comfortable, I was just an ACTUAL unbrushed-teeth MESS.