Beyond The Sea
Life Is Unfair

Swann Dive

I am the worst mother in the world, and do you know why?

Because my five-year-old son is going to kindergarten next week, and we met his new teacher and his new classroom today, and I did not remember to bring my camera!!!!

What is it with me and the camnesia lately??

After Stephanie returned with my van this morning - she needed it to go get her car keys from home! - the Littles and I headed to Jack's new school - and Chloë's all-along school - for the Back to School Picnic.

We didn't actually have time for all that picnicking stuff, though. Mommy had an appointment to get to up in Newport News.

So we made our way to the free t-shirt table, and collected one for Jack. They didn't want to give me one for Chloë since only kids present at the picnic were supposed to receive a shirt, but since everyone at that school just adores that child, they made an exception. I didn't even have to ask!

Wherever we went, it was, "Where's Chloë? Where's Chloë?" I swear everyone in school knows her. It amazes me. I was never popular, but my kid? Universally loved.  Of course, then they all looked at the three of us and wondered what the heck we were doing there without her, so I pointed out Jack as the new kid on the block to everyone. He was thrilled about this recognition. Ever since we bought his supplies and new backpack, he is dying to go to school!

We headed straight for the kindergarten wing of the school, to meet Mrs. Swann, Jack's new teacher. She was young! Way young. After Mrs. Meltzer's ancient teaching methods when Chloë was a kindergartner, I was thrilled to see this. She should have plenty of new tricks for getting the children to accomplish their goals, surely. Rote drilling? Not my style, not good for my kids.

Oh, let this be a wonderful new year of learning for Jack. I hope so.

Then, even though Chlo is still at camp, I wanted to meet her new second grade (OMG) teacher, Mrs. Duke. She turned out to be a lovely lady, and I liked her right from the start, just as I did with Mrs. Pfeiffer  last year. I hope that is a good sign. She already knew who Chloë was, so she was disappointed not to see her today.

We visited the art teacher, music teacher, and gym teacher, too. Jack won't have art this year, though - they do that right in the classroom. Oh, and the principal, Mr. Timlin. He and I know each other well from my work on the PTA board and from me pestering him to put out more recycling cans in the school, so his first greeting to me was, "You dyed your hair blond on me!" He's a Chloëphile too, so he seemed thrilled to meet my little guy, giving him high-fives and handshakes.

Because the kids were begging for something to eat, then, I bought them each a snowcone. We don't do hot dogs and  hamburgers, and I didn't want to buy them chips and sodas. It was super hot today, so a snowcone seemed like just the thing. And it was. I know, because Jack ate three bites of his and declared himself finished, and I tore into that thing. So good. Refreshing. Perfect.

We went home after that, making this the first year I didn't sign up for the PTA at the picnic. I'll do it when the papers come home next week. I just had to get out of that crowd, and I had to get ready for the drive up north. I was just looking up the address when Stephanie returned to babysit, toting her freaking adorable little niece, Carolynn. (Forgive me if I spelled her name wrong, Steph; I just know SO many Carolines right now!)


I gave her a few quick instructions and then took off for my visit to the gastric bypass surgeon in Newport News. My appointment wasn't until 4:30, and I left just after 2. But I had to take their computer questionnaire first. I ended up being wicked early and finishing the test over an hour early. I was all set to take a snooze in my van when they called me back early to see the doctor. Yay! I wouldn't have to wait after all.

Dr. Clarke was very nice. He spent as much time as I needed, going over my questions and issues, and he never made me feel like a gross, disgusting fatass - not once - unlike the doc from Bariatric Surgery in the Naval hospital. I am glad I made the choice to stick with him; it was the right thing to do, I believe. Long drive notwithstanding.

I talked to the insurance lady about my upcoming hoop-jumping fest after that, and then I was on the road again, before my actual appointment time. Nice. I will have to do a lot of the same things I did for the other doc, and they could probably use the same tests, but I feel like I should just do them all over again in case things have changed. As soon as I get that - and the daunting psych consult (Lord, give me strength not to break down this time!) - out of the way, we'll be ready to schedule the surgery. I am excited! Skinny-me, come on down!

The drive home was excruciatingly slow, made worse by the fact that I was suddenly exhausted and doing touch-and-goes all the way home. The bridge and tunnel are always backed up at that time of the day, and this was no exception. If I could pulled over to take a nap, I would have. But, I made it home in one piece. Maybe I should store some No-Doze in the glove compartment.

I really wanted a nap when I arrived home, like Rob and the kiddies were doing, but Sam the Schwan's guy was due to be there in a half-hour. And I hadn't yet gone through the catalog to see what I wanted. So I grabbed it, and my pen, and lickety-split came up with a good list. We still had a lot of food from the last time, actually, so I just replenished the few things I knew we liked. A lot of it was ice cream. Hey, it's summer, and I don't mind if the kids eat a lot of it right now.

Well... I'm suddenly out of words. That's a good stopping point, I think. Tomorrow, we go pick up Chloë! I am beside myself with excitement!!!