Up early this morning, rousting two sleepy protesting whining burrowing-under-the-covers children up! and at-em! and tossing on an outfit myself - do I match? Do I ever match? - and coffee slurped with the quick run down of our respective days and then bundle, bundle, who's got your coat and where is your backpack out the door and go!
Fluoride treatment given at my son's school, set up the trays, take the trays down, watch twenty kids at a time swish swish swish and spit (did anyone swallow? No? Good...) R helping out by carrying Kleenex and wiping down the trays then wham back in the car and speed for town - your turn to be left at school, then your Mom has to go to work.....
and a full stop when she says plaintively, face half-buried in the remains of what used to be her baby blanket, thumb hovering dangerously near her mouth But I don't wanna go to school today, Mama.
Jus' don't wanna. Don't like school today.
Gave the usual pep-talk - You love school! You do! It's fun! And....Mama's going to work! So...let's go!
She pouted a bit, but unbuckled herself and followed me in, her Chicago Bulls cap bobbing along over the ruffled pink and white lining of her denim jacket (my girl is a study in contrasts) sat on the bench to exchange shoes for slippers, hung her coat and bookbag on her hook. Then she hung back for a minute in the hall, sending me one more hopefully beseeching look before giving me a hug goodbye. I opened the half-door to her room, exchanged pleasentries with one of her teachers, and was leaing down for a quick kiss when (right in my ear) the little boy who Rosey has happily shared tricycles carrot sticks and Legos with for the last few weeks said loudly, frowning at my daughter
'I don't want to play with you anymore.'
And R stared, struck dumb, and her face crumpled a bit and she looked at me but I was in full gotta-leave mode and her teacher swooped in, grabbing up my sad, sad daughter and twinkling at me that she would work this out and I went out into the hall and out the front door and paused on the front porch
and thought about what a jerk I am.
And how small she may be but how her feelings aren't and how I should never put a paycheck and being on time in front of my daughter's emotions.
(And briefly about how I'd like to put my foot into the seat of that boy's jeans)
And I turned and went back and stepped up to the door but it was circle time and I don't know how it ended.
Sometimes I just don't think.