A little over a week ago, both of my kids started school. I seized the opportunity as a fresh start. I revamped my routine, started doing morning workouts, and planned my outfits in advance. I had my shit together. On the first week of school, I rolled up looking fly and feeling like I was going to rule this school year.
Fast-forward to this week and things are already falling apart.
I took exactly one shower in the past five days, and was too lazy to dry my hair, so it's been in a very unkempt ponytail for the last couple days. I'm currently eating a Milky Way bar for lunch that I stole from a class birthday goody bag.
Clearly, it does not take long for my over-ambition to turn me from a vision of perfection into a train wreck you can't look away from. Behold, my first week of school splendor, versus my second week of school ineptitude.
First week of school outfits:
I planned out my outfits in advance. I shaved my legs every other day. I added accessories, and absolutely did not leave the house in my dirty, hole covered, used-to-be-white Toms that show no less than half of my big toe. I even ironed the dress I wore on the first day of school. I wore the sparkly and only slightly impractical sandals I love. I felt glorious.
I helped the kids pick out their outfits and made sure no one was digging through the dirty clothes hamper for spaghetti-covered favorite shirts. We all rolled up to school (early of course) looking like a modern Norman Rockwell dream.
Second week of school outfits:
My current pants have barbeque sauce, grease, and chocolate stains on them. I am wearing a black t-shirt, it is not ironed, and it is covered in cat hair. I mean, "could almost pass for 90s mohair top" covered in cat hair.
My son is wearing the shirt he wore for the first day of school, which now has a lot of dirty, sticky crud on it because I washed it with his first-day-of-school sticker still attached. Yay, me! My daughter's in her favorite Ariel shirt. It was definitely fished from the dirty clothes hamper.
First week of school screen time:
The kids had a strict half hour of morning cartoons. We spent our evenings reading and hanging out as a family. I managed my Facebook time diligently, didn't eff around watching cat videos when I was supposed to be working, and generally was the master of my own destiny. I literally began outlining a book proposal on perfecting routine.
Second week of school screen time:
Oh sweet Jesus, how long have you had those gameboys? Is that why everyone has been so blissfully quiet? Whatever, I don't care. I do not have my shit together. Watch a movie before breakfast. We have officially entered survival mode. I am considering starting a Twitter war with my local congressman and currently DM fighting with one of my old, white male classmates about my "inappropriate" activist behavior. NOTHING MATTERS ANYMORE. Watch all the television your hearts desire.
Related: Parenting Ideals, Meet Toddler
First week of school hair:
That's right, HAIR deserved it's own subsection the first week of school. There were dutch braids, fishtail braids, flowing Herbal Essence hair. Both boys had hard parted, perfectly gelled hair. I curled my hair, twice. Everyone showered, multiple times throughout the week. I showered DAILY. I cannot stress enough how magical we all looked. I should have hired a professional photographer to follow us around and capture our immense beauty.
Second week of school hair:
It's best we just don't talk about my hair. I showered once, didn't blow dry, and fell asleep with my voluminous hair in a messy bun. I am currently on Amazon, investing in more hats.
My daughter got a regular braid, which I'm planning to leave in until I remember to bathe her again. We're just adding clips every time her hair falls in her face.
I left my son to do his own hair. Half a jar of pomade is gone. His hair is like a polished rock..
First week of school lunches:
I'm not going to sit here and pretend I'm the kind of mom who makes elaborate bento boxes, but I made a pretty good variety of healthy school lunches our first week. I cut copious amounts of fresh fruit and had everything packed and ready well in advance. I meal prepped for my husband and me and posted our food prep photos on Instagram, as if I was going to make this a regular thing. #sundayfunday #mealprep This was the kind of woman I was now.
Second week of school lunches:
Sandwich. Sandwich. Oh god, we're out of bread. Scramble into son's room to pick quarters out of his allowance jar until we have enough for cafeteria lunch. Write IOU on post-it and stick to chore chart. Go to Walmart after school drop off. Buy bread. Forget diapers. Eat candy bar for my own lunch, and wash it down with Kombucha for balance.
First week of school workouts:
5:45 a.m. running. Yoga on off days.
Second week of school workouts:
Wake up after kids. Count rushing around screaming at everyone that we are not ready as cardio.
Who knows, maybe next week will be better. Maybe I'll give the intense schedule another go, or figure out what's most important and let the rest slide so I don't run myself so ragged. The point is, if you feel like you're sucking at the back-to-school transition, take heart. I am out here doing way way worse.