Yesterday was preschool registration for Jack and Amanda and we were the very first people there. I turned on all the lights, put our name in the bowl, and picked out the seats where we would sit for the next hour. I made sure the seats were facing the registration table and that the table was far away from the stage area.
As I was unpacking the kids' water cups and spill-proof snack cups, I spilled my entire Diet Mountain Dew on the registration forms. It didn't count because no one was there to see it. I had time to clean the mess and find a spot to dry them out. Soon, other Moms started to walk in with their children, and the school directors started to pull names from the bowl.
While the first names were called, I watched my kids sitting in their chairs - behaving. Amanda brought three toys and was sharing them all with friends. Jack was only taking one goldfish out at a time. He wasn't even smashing them. When the kids started to roam around the room in one big giggle gang, they were still on good behavior.
When I spotted the gang peeking into an open storage area, I walked over and closed the accordion wall. As I walked back to my chair in my ironed clothes, blown-dry hair and lipstick, I started to feel my heart racing. Why did I just do that? I just closed that wall. I didn't even look at anyone. Not even a side-eye Mom-to-Mom "uh-oh" before I did that.
I sat down and Jack was right behind me, climbing into his chair. Someone asked me a question about teachers. I answered without thinking. Why are rookies asking me questions? This is way too organized. I am way too organized. Where is my freakin' ponytail? Am I wearing a necklace? Who are these children and what have they done with my stinky little neenerheads?
More names were called. People joked about always being the last one called. And then I saw Amanda up on stage about to play the drums. As I hurried to the stage, Jack grabbed himself with both hands and ran after me yelling "poo poo! poo poo!" I brought both of them back to the table, but they quickly followed another girl into the hall toward the stairs. I heard Jack yelling "hide! hide!" and found them crouching in a corner with their eyes closed.
I took the kids back to the table. Jack began smashing his goldfish and Amanda was mad that I wouldn't let her be a rock star. Our name was called, but before I made it to the registration table, the kids were in the hallway again. I excused myself for a second, found the kids hiding in the same corner, and gently escorted them to the registration table. I handed in my damp paperwork, collected our belongings, changed Jack's diaper, and dragged the screaming kids to their respective classrooms.
By the time I got to my car, I felt more like myself. A frazzled mess. All was right in the world. And I couldn't contain my smile when I picked the kids up and realized...
Amanda's pants were on backward.