Waking my two boys up for school is much like an episode of “The Walking Dead.” It is a painful process in which slow-moving creatures grunt and groan their way out of bed and though the house completely oblivious to the havoc that they are wreaking on the world around them. Between the grunts and groans, they make more excuses than a crooked politician as to why they cannot go to school. Often, a fight will ensue between the said pre-teen creatures. Usually, it is about who will be the first in the bathroom. Typically, the referee is their very frazzled mother, who has to get ready for school, as well. Before all is said and done, neither has brushed their teeth and my hair and make-up is not done. I look like Medusa and their breath smells like something died. This all before 6:15 AM.
Each morning we go through this same episode. Grunts, groans, fights, and refereeing. Eventually, they are “ready” for school. Basically, this is dressed, teeth brushed, and sometimes hair combed. My youngest son, who much to my chagrin, is the most difficult to deal with in the morning, because he lives by the motto, “Clothes do not have to match. They just keep you from being naked.” While I see the logic in this thought process, blue Nike shorts do not go with a long-sleeved Florida State shirt in August. If he had his choice, he would look like a transient, complete with camo Crocs and long socks. After a long battle with his choice of attire, we manage to come to a compromise. He keeps the Crocs and socks if his clothes match.
Every minute in the morning is precious, as I am a teacher and must be at work by 7:45 AM. By the time I manage to get myself ready for the day, the second battle of getting in the truck begins.
“Get your shoes on.”
“Get your backpack.”
“What do you mean you left your lunch upstairs?”
“Leave the dog alone!”
“Get the dog inside!”
“GET. IN. THE. TRUCK.”
This process can be further complicated during flood season, as we live by the Chipola River. Each spring, our yard will flood and we will have to walk through, some times kayak through, Mother Nature’s mood-swing just to get to my truck. Often, as we drive to school I continue to play the role of WWE ref and threaten to “leave them on the side of the road” if they do not behave. By the time we get to school, they have calmed themselves to the point that they look like “perfect angels.” I now look and feel like “The Walking Dead.” Exhausted, I make my way into the school. As we part ways, my youngest says, “Have a good day, Ruben.” My oldest hugs me and says, “I love you, Mom.” I watch them leave for class and think, “Rick and Daryl? They ain’t got nothing on Moms.” I would not trade my life with those boys for the world.
“I trudged through 3 feet of ice-cold flood water, dodging man-eating alligators and snakes, with a head cold, just to get to my truck and go to school…dragging y’all behind me. So unless the earth opens up and fire-breathing dragons destroy your home and Jesus himself descends from the sky for the second coming, then there is no reason why you can’t go to school. Your excuse is not valid. Get out of bed,”~Confessions of the Not So Rich and Famous