Wednesday, September 4, 2013

This Parenting Job is Hard

Nora's been in Kindergarten for two weeks. Typing that is so weird.

Today, I was trying to make sandwiches for two screaming, exhausted boys at about 12:15, when the phone rang. It was the school nurse calling. Nora had bumped her head at recess (hard) and was really upset in the clinic. I asked, "Is she okay?"

"She doesn't have a cut or anything, but she has a pretty big goose egg," the nurse said.

I stood there blinking for what felt like an entire minute.

"Um. What do I need to do?" I eventually asked.

"Well, Nora really needs her mommy," is what I heard. She may have really said that.

"Do I need to come get her?" I asked.

"Well . . .  if you just want to pop in and hug her, you could do that. She will probably be okay once she gets back to class, but if you wanted to come get her, I would excuse the absence," she said.

My jaw dropped open as I looked at my two little boys, mopping the floor with their bodies, who desperately needed naps. There was no flippin' way I was going to be able to throw them in the car just to go comfort her. I knew it'd make it worse, too. If I went in there, she was going to come home with me.

Then, she let Nora talk to me for a minute. Nora begged for me to come "just for a minute." I tried to tell her that the boys were about to take a nap, and I just couldn't. I told her I was sorry she was hurting. (It was awful, by the way.)

When the nurse got back on the line, something took over, and it was like someone else was talking. "Look. I can't really go in there just to give her a hug. I think it'll make it worse. If she still struggles when you send her back to class, let me know. I will find a way to come get her."

That's something a parent would say. That's weird.

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