Dear First Day of School,
We need to talk.
I don’t want to hate you. I really don’t. Shall we maybe work together to package the day in a way we all come home with smiles?
I have a few requests. Just a few. If you could find it in your heart to accommodate my small, itty-bitty expectations, I think I could love you.
If not? Well, I already said I don’t want to hate you. Really, it’s your choice.
Here we go:
- Can you begin just one hour later? You know—so I can have time to take pictures of my own kids, make last minute copies, and attempt to put on make-up.
- Just prior to the ring of the alarm clock, I need to be wide awake—like Saturday-morning-slept-over-12-hours awake. This may be difficult because I will have only had 4-5 hours of sleep. But remember, I want to love you.
- I need my coffee to be strong. STRONG. This is a non-negotiable.
- All clothing must look perfect, so multiple wardrobe changes are unnecessary.
- Children should wake up with a miraculous love for one another bringing a harmonious calm to the household. This may be your most difficult task, but I believe in you.
- The magical lunch-making unicorn should appear at some point overnight. Healthy choices are negotiable.
- All bags and kid backpacks have everything necessary already packed and beside the front door.
- Nothing can be forgotten. Nothing.
- The camera should be set outside prior to the kid photo shoot. Because you need to remember this is FLORIDA, and the moment I take my camera from the air-conditioned inside to the heat-blanketed outside condensation commences. You may view this as an opportunity for a science lesson for my kids. But one, my kids have science in school. And two, I’m an English teacher with zero time for science lessons.
- Traffic needs to be light. This isn’t asking for much. You must also make sure any one driving at or below the speed limit is behind me. Okay?
- The car must arrive in the school parking lot at least five minutes early. Yes. You heard me. Early. Stop laughing.
- My school bag should be reminiscent of the one carried by Mary Poppins. I need to pull magic out of that bag. Magic that captivates even the most cynical student doubting my powers.
- Students need to believe my words are gold, like the shiny, valuable metal, like the 24-carat kind. This way they will gather my treasure and hold it close and remember where they put it.
- I should be able to whisper yet my voice should carry to the furthest corners of my room, allowing for a well-rested throat at day’s end.
- All student questions must be easy to answer.
- The last bell should ring, and I must be fully prepared for day two.
- Take a deep breath. This one’s tricky. Ready? I need to leave campus on time. Yep. On time. I promise this is no jest.
- Finally? My own two darlings need to declare the First Day of School as the BEST. DAY. EVERRRR! (If their arms are stretched wide and they’re spinning circles, I’m happy to award bonus points. I may even allow you to miss one request. Except for numbers 1-10, 11, and 12-18.)
So you see, this list of requests is fairly simple and straightforward. Nothing too difficult, and I’m sure you can manage. Because I want to love you, I really do.
I understand my expectations are high. And well, the expectations of all mankind are high on this day. It’s a lot to live up to—you know—one day setting the tone for the entire year thing is a mite stressful. But I am confident you will rise to the challenge.
Heather—Loving Teacher, Mom, and Wife
P.S. Honestly? If you could help me remember no day is perfect, and my joy is not based on circumstances, that would actually be enough.
P.P.S. I really do love my job.
Happy First Day of School, Friends!
May we know we’re not alone, and
hard days have the power to strengthen our resolve
and teach us to persevere.