Yesterday I was convinced that Will went to school without his underwear on. This would be typical, as Will hates wearing underwear. He is a sensitive boy who likes the tags cut out of his tee shirts and his socks pulled up just so. Underwear rubs him the wrong way, so to speak.
I came to the conclusion that my boy was sans undies when I took some laundry up to his room after I'd dropped the boys off at school. There, on his bed, where I'd laid out his clothes first thing in the morning, was a lone pair of navy blue, knit boxers. Curses! I cursed through clenched teeth, foiled again!
When I picked him up from school, I waited til we were out of earshot of the other kindergarteners and their moms to chastise him. "What did Dr. Wilks say about wearing underwear? Remember what happens if you get hit by a ball in a sensitive area?"
He claimed innocence, swore he was appropriately clad. And sure enough, when we got home, I did the underwear check and there were a pair of navy blue, knit boxers (he has several pairs). "I got them out of my drawer," he explained. "I didn't see any underwear on my bed."
The funny thing is, I was sort of disappointed by his underwear righteousness. I had been robbed of a funny story--The Day Will Went to School Without His Underwear. But I was also proud. My son actually sought his underwear out when he couldn't find any with the rest of his clothes. What a fine young man he's turning into!
We carpool with another family on the next block. Two boys, the same age as my boys. The problem is with the older child, whom we shall call Adolph, for no particular reason. He is as unpleasant of a child as I've ever met. Gets in the car without so much as a hello, even after I say in my most cheerful voice (which scares my own children, who wonder who this strange woman in the front seat is and what she did with their real mother), "Good morning, Adolph! How nice to see you! How are you this morning?!"
No response. I say it again. I repeat myself several times until I get the barest of responses. When I drop the kids off at school, I chirp, "Have a great day, Adolph!" No reply whatsoever.
When he does talk in the car, it is to reprimand my sons or to tell his brother to shut up. He's incredibly bossy, a know-it-all. He's really quite horrible.
My only defense is this forced, over the top cheerfulness.I know it is torture to him, the fingernails scraping down the chalkboard of his life, and I can get away with it because I'm a mom and I'm supposed to be disgustingly cheerful in the morning.
I'm sure I'll be writing more about Adolph, as I'm driving most mornings and sooner or later I will break and end up swerving off the road, leaping out of the car, and choking him within an inch of his life. I promise to give you all the grisly details.
This is the boys' third day of school. I've been trying to tidy up the house before they get home so that it seems a warm and comforting place to them upon their arrival, a sanctuary, a safe and healing place. Do you think kids--boys especially--register that their house is neat and orderly when they come home? At least subconsciously? Or should I quit cleaning up and spend more time reading novels and doing my nails? I hate to think all the cleaning and tidying is for naught--and of course am always looking for an excuse to stop doing it.
The joy of Will: he tells me what he does all day. Dropping off Jack at school is like dropping him into a black hole where apparently nothing ever happens. Will's day is full of events and he's happy to share. After two days of school, there's clearly a character in his class, a boy named Sam who drew a picture of a secret agent in science class the first day of school instead of drawing something from nature. Yesterday, Sam walked in PE instead of running. He was playing Secret Agent Man again, according to Will. Will just shakes his head when telling me about Sam. Is this kid crazy or what, he wants to know. And why does he wear a Superman cape to school? Doesn't he know he's not supposed to do that?
I love the Sams of the world, but I have to say that at this point in my life it's nice to have a Will, who will draw a picture of a tree, some birds and a mountain when asked to come up with a nature scene, who runs really, really fast in PE, and who wears a baseball shirt to school, not a superman cape. I worried so much about Jack when he started kindergarten, because he was an odd bird who wouldn't talk to the other kids but instead sat in the reading corner and read to his heart's delight. I don't worry so much about Will, who is odd in his own right, but who talks, plays, draws and generally behaves like a typical kindergartener. Quite frankly, it's a relief.