You know, I very rarely just make one mistake. Usually, when I goof something up, it is a snowball effect of doom as I go into overdrive to try to correct the first error and end up destroying the space around me in true sitcom style. Just ask Jamie and Wes, whose brand new beige sofa, barstools, and light colored walls I baptized with a large coffee.
I can’t even remember what triggered it, but I sloshed my coffee, and in scrambling to keep it from getting on anything, I splashed it out of the cup, slipped on what I had splashed, managed to toss the cup up in the air and somehow catch it by the handle as I swung in an arc around the living room that slung coffee from the breakfast bar, all the way across their new sectional. Coffee in the floor. Coffee on the cloth barstool seats. Coffee on the sectional. Coffee in my hair. Coffee all over the place. If I’d just stood still, there would only have been a small mess.
This morning, at 7:44, I realized I had missed the special parent/teacher conference that Thor’s teacher had asked us to attend at 7:15. I panicked. I waited until I got to a red light, then fired off an email apologizing and asking to reschedule. The teacher wrote back and I couldn’t really read the whole email as I was driving, but some words popped out at me, including the words “field trip.” I panicked again.
“Today is Thor’s field trip!” I yelled aloud at myself. “And you didn’t pack his lunch! AUGH!!!”
What could I do? I was halfway to work, it was 7:55, and I couldn’t get back to his school with a lunch in time to beat the busses leaving. I called the school and talked to the secretary, sounding like a crazy woman. She assured me that they would send him down to the cafeteria to buy a lunch, and that they wouldn’t let him miss the field trip.
I hung up, starting to cry because a) I had forgotten my son’s p/t conference and I feel awful about that, b) I was afraid he was going to feel thrown away because I had forgotten to pack him a lunch, c) I was afraid he would feel weird because the field trip bus was waiting for him, and d) because my mistake had delayed an entire school full of 2nd graders. I mean, that’s 100 kids on busses who are delayed because one mother forgot a lunch. Have you ever been on a bus with a 7 year old? Have you ever been a 7 year old on a bus?
I was just getting to the point of really worrying about my mascara when my phone rang. It was the school. The wonderful secretary had called to tell me she had spoken with Thor’s teacher, and the field trip is not until Thursday, so I hadn’t missed the boat entirely. I laughed a crazy person. She laughed like a concerned person. I said, “Thank goodness! At least I’m not THE worst mother in the world.” She laughed again, uncomfortably, and we said our goodbyes.
Then, I was laughing and crying at the same time, and making like Alice Cooper with the mascara. I crazy laughed for a solid minute before shaking out of it (when I missed my exit.) So, while Thor might not know how close he came to 2nd Grade level trauma, his teacher absolutely, 100%, without any question knows where all of his shortcomings originate. Maybe we don’t need a conference at all now? Maybe she’ll just look at his tendency to forget things and feel sorry for him, given that it is a genetic flaw.
The kid doesn’t have ADD. He has Related to Me.