I don’t know quite why I can’t let go of this situation. It happened on Friday. I had plenty of opportunities to vent about it over the weekend…which I did. This morning, I addressed it directly. Still feeling a bit miffed about this.
On Friday afternoon, the kids summer camp was scheduled for a trip to the local sprinkler park. Thursday night, I dutifully packed their swimsuits and towels into their backpacks. Friday morning, I made sure that they both left with their bags. I gave no more thought to their day, as I had sent them equipped with everything they needed.
That afternoon when I picked them up, things were a bit chaotic. An ugly thunderstorm had just rolled through, and we weren’t sure if there was more to come. I didn’t stick around and chat at daycare like I might normally have. So, as the kids and I were driving away Tommy said to me “Mommy, we’re supposed to have our swimsuits for the sprinkler park.” To which I replied “I know, that’s why I sent them with you today.” I admit, that was the last point at which I was calm about this. Tommy just looked at me kind of dumbfounded and said “oh.” I started asking more questions, but since I had already allowed myself to get angry (and displayed it to the children), getting answers out of Tommy (or Anna) was very difficult. Once Tommy knows that I’m angry and that he might be in trouble, he shuts down.
I was frustrated on so many levels. First of all, what did the kids think was in their backpacks? The only days they took them last week were days that they needed swim stuff. Second, who was the teacher that allowed this to happen? I really thought that all the teachers working with the camp kids knew Tommy well enough that they would know to double check. Did someone assume that because Anna agreed with Tommy, that there was no need to double check? Why wasn’t Anna thinking and speaking for herself? Did someone assume that because many parents forgot, that all of us forgot??
I starting firing away, desperately trying to piece this picture together and to understand where the breakdown was. I started getting answers from the kids, but their stories didn’t match. I talked myself out of calling the center director that afternoon because I felt that would be overreacting. Instead, I chose to send a text to our babysitter, who is also a teacher there. She didn’t get back to me right away, but when she did, everything became more clear. Tommy’s story was pretty much true. Anna’s was probably different because she really didn’t know what was going on. At least I had the peace of mind of knowing more about what happened. In general, most parents missed that on the schedule so only the kids that had swimming lessons earlier in the day were prepared to go. That doesn’t surprise me at all.
I saw a lot of odd things there last week. One kid who was signed up for swimming lessons showed up on Monday with no swimsuit. uhhh…ok. The kids are supposed to wear their camp T-shirts on Tuesday for bowling and on Thursday for field trips. Many parents failed to do this on one or both of the days. My kids however, had their appropriate swimwear with them on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and they were both in their matching camp T-shirts on Tuesday and Thursday. My kids were prepared for each day. Why? Because that’s how I am.
I am almost neurotic about making sure my kids have everything they need everyday. I obsess about those details, checking over and over again. I don’t want to be responsible if they miss out on something because they weren’t prepared. I have enough guilt issues. I don’t want to see their sad little faces come home disappointed because I forgot something.
Do I like that my son can’t remember by lunchtime what he left the house with in the morning? NO. Do I like that he needs to be reminded of so much? NO. It is what it is though.