This week was steeped in back-to-school madness. I thought I was winning by purchasing school supplies at the beginning of the summer. I forgot that was only part of the process.
Clothes shopping was difficult this year. Hannah is in that transitioning stage between little kids clothing and junior sizes. I underestimated how hard this transition would be.
I’ve gotten used to shopping at specific stores for the last nine years. Stores that (I failed to notice this before) barely nod at junior sizes.
Which left me wondering ‘where the hell do I go from here?’ And then I realized, oh wait.
Oh sweet Jesus . . .
If possible I would have spared myself the misery and shopped online. I’ll do anything just about anything to avoid the mall. The problem was that I’ve never shopped junior sizes and I had no idea what size Hannah wore.
Which meant we had the added step of trying everything on.
Wine should be served at customer service counters in the mall for precisely this reason.
Connor is slightly easier to shop for. Size wise, anyway. Finding pants either kid will wear has been, well, interesting.
Both of my kids balk like cranky cattle when I suggest they wear jeans. My fault, of course. I should have put them in jeans when they were younger. Now at six and nine, they abhor the feeling of denim.
PSA to parents of young children: Put your kids in jeans. RIGHT NOW. You have no idea what kind of headache you’ll save yourself later.
And shoes. Holy God, shoes. This time Hannah was the easy one. Connor, though. . .
You’d think a size three is a size three is a size three, right? Apparently . . . no. Thank you Amazon for your exceedingly simple return process. Sorry the box we used was colored on and had a hole in the top. Before I repackaged the shoes it briefly lived as a piggy bank.
Finding out teacher names was another adventure. I don’t know what other schools are like but the parents at our school are ultra-eager to see class rosters. Picture shopping for a Tickle Me Elmo at Toys R Us on Christmas Eve. It was that kind of an elbow throwin’ good time.
And yet, even with all the chaos, I can’t help but think of how our back-to-school went last year.
I was on my fourth round of chemotherapy and just starting to lose my hair. In addition to orientations and meet-the-teacher meetings I had to sit down with the kids’ teachers and school counselor to explain that I had cancer and that my kids might need some extra support.
Last year all I wanted was the normal craziness of this year.
Back to school might be exhausting and stressful and I think I have more homework than they do the first few weeks, but mostly I just feel utter and complete gratitude that I’m here to see it.
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