Do They Do Flex Time for Kindergarten?

Phaedra starts kindergarten next week.  In four days.  We’ve been talking about it all year long, all summer long, and now it’s four days away.  She’s totally ready for it, my tiny forty-year-old woman.  In fact, she’s bored of the subject.  We’ve talked it to death, to the point where she has the play-by-play down on what exactly will happen on the first day.  Enough already, Mom.  I got this.  Me, however?

I’m freeeeeeeeeaking out.

It’s not the whole “MY BABY OMFG WAAAAAAAAAH” thing.  I went through all that already.  I’m ready to admit that my tiny, six pound, twelve ounce baby girl is ready to go to kindergarten.  (I guess.)  I’m still not mature enough to handle the logistics of school, but that’s besides the point.  Ready or not, the State of Michigan would prefer I get my sorry ass out of bed every single day without fail and be sure my child makes it to school.

Dirty feet and passed out?
“I know Phaedra wasn’t in school yesterday, Mrs. Weekly. It’s just that the floor was so comfortable, and I couldn’t find my shoes…Yes, I’ll hold for CPS.”

On top of all that, I feel like I’m in mourning.  Phaedra starting kindergarten is the end of an era for our family.  For five years, our children belonged to us and us alone.  We were beholden to no one.  Our kids didn’t necessarily have to be anywhere.  If we didn’t want to drop them off with the babysitter, i.e. Grandma, or skip ballet class, no one cared.  Even preschool was pretty optional much of the time — I mean, we paid them to let Phaedra come.  If she didn’t show up, we were the dummies for wasting our money.  Trips and events were planned around our work and class schedules.

But now, for 6 1/2 hours a day, five days a week, Phaedra will officially belong to Washington Elementary School.  They will expect her to show up every day, on time.  Phaedra now has a schedule that must be considered in our daily plans.  I will need to justify her absence or early exit from class.  Her teacher will most definitely give me the stink eye when I tell her Phaedra will miss two days of school in a couple of weeks for our family trip to Disney World.  Not even a month into the school year, and I’m already not taking this seriously enough.

DisneyWorld 424
Pictured: Valid reason to skip school at five years old.

Kindergarten means giving up a little bit of freedom we always had.  It means giving up that tiny shred of baby protection and proximity that I was still holding on to.  It all seems terribly grown-up.  Our family is evolving from a family of babies to a family with children.  And frankly, it is perplexing and frightening all at once.

This entry was posted in ambivalence, Debbie Downer, kindergarten, Phaedra, professional slacker, Uncategorized, where did my baby go?. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Do They Do Flex Time for Kindergarten?

  1. Sarah says:

    this entry was posted in: “Debbie Downer”. hahah. Janel! you are soooo not Ms. Downer.
    It is realllllly hard to let our kids grow up. Yes. We “let” them.

    • Jenn says:

      kindergarden was easy wait until you drop her off at college in anhoetr state!!! the feelings the same, you just want to hold their hand through life and know what they are happy and safe and my girls are in their 30 s ..

  2. iamjanel says:

    You’re soooooooooo right Sarah. Only with our permission 🙂

  3. Arnebya says:

    Going through this now with the boy in pre-K3. He went last Thursday for an intro day, then starts full time, five days a week on Tuesday. My girls are in 7th and 4th grades, so I’m guessing it was just the amount of time between them that had me outside his classroom wall sliding to the floor murmuring “just let me lie here.”

    Good luck with the teacher stink eye for your “necessary” two days’ absence. (As I giggle because we have such a problem with absenteeism at my daughter’s elementary school and with parents picking up unnecessarily before school ends that your two days wouldn’t even register).

  4. iamjanel says:

    Good to know I’m a mild offender. After I conquer kindergarten, I move on to getting upset all over again over my middle daughter starting preschool.

  5. Julia's Math says:

    While my daughter was with a nanny, we were still on our schedule. Now she’s in school… Not digging thr morning rush, that’s for sure! And I think Disney is an excellent reason to skip school. Besides, you don’t have to tell them where she will be! You can just say she won’t be there… And when she comes back with Mickey ears… Well your cover might be blown!

    • Ha! Yeah, best to ‘fess up now, because there’s no way on Earth that girl can keep her mouth shut about…well, pretty much anything. I’m sure her classmates are already well aware of the inner workings of our household.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *