Starting preschool is hard ... especially for working moms!

This fall, tomorrow to be exact, O will be starting preschool. An institution that is less like a daycare and more like school, school. And with that, there are going to be some new challenges. But I didn’t figure out about these new challenges until I attended the parent’s meeting at my son’s school the other day. Awesome.

First off, I have get there on time. This is a school, where class starts every day at the same time, and he’ll only be there for a few hours. If we miss 15 minutes, we miss a lot. Timeliness wasn’t as much of a factor before–daycare knew what time we usually arrived, and they worked around us (and other parents). I’m generally pretty punctual, but mornings are hec.tic. I don’t want O to be known as the kid who’s always late because his working mom can’t get her stuff together.

And speaking of working moms–I had no idea schools had so many days off! It’s been awhile since my schooling years, so it simply didn’t dawn on me. There are in-service days and Veteran’s Day and Columbus Day and other days I’m not remembering. When I looked at the school calendar, I gasped. Out loud and loudly. (Luckily, only one other mom heard me, and I’ve convinced myself she thinks I’m simply a funny yawner–not the mom who gasps while looking at school calendars. Because, really, who does that?)

Anyway, here I was using most of my vacation to cover the week and a half between sitter and school–not realizing that I’d need another week and a half (or more) to cover the days O would have off between August 24th and December. (I haven’t even received the January to June calendar yet, but rest assured I’ll be reading that one in private.) Now the situation isn’t really that dire–his father and I can cover for each other, we could call a sitter for some days, I could work from home. (Luckily, I have an employer who is cool with that.) But some people don’t have those options. And even though I do, I know it’s still going to be a stressful time trying to juggle schedules when the time comes.

Also this preschool depends on heavy parent involvement–there are the committees I need to be on, snacks I have to bring in, and other ways I need to help out around school. This is a good thing. I want to be heavily involved in my child’s school, his education–it’s a reason I picked the school. But reality is setting in–not only about what all I need to do, but that I can be a *tad* forgetful and scatterbrained. For example (because it happened again today) I’m the mom who takes her child to the playground on a hot day, and forgets to pack a drink, or better yet, remembers to bring it, but leaves it in the car. (Warm water! Yum!)

So yeah, in short, I hope I don’t $*%@ %&$* up, when it comes to my parental school duties. Or if I do, they’re nice about telling me I need to shape up or it’s going to go on my permanent record.

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