If you've yet to experience school pickup, let me just tell you that you're both lucky and unfortunate. On one hand, the "pickup line" at your kid's school is the most adorable form of entertainment you'll ever encounter. On the other hand, it's kind of the absolute worst. Have you ever noticed that most parents are on their phones while they wait for their child? It's because they're communicating via texts every woman sends her partner during preschool pickup.
We might all be different people with different parenting styles and varying methods, but everyone in the pickup line is on alert for preschool drama and new mini van models, and with the kind of technology that allows us to share our experience with our partners, we're able to make important (and not so important) life decisions and observations with the swipe of a screen.
Since I'm fairly new to this phase of life, I'm still sifting through the emotional stages of sending my kids to preschool. For me, dropping them off is a relief. I work from home, so having them absent for a part of the day allows me to get more work done without losing my freaking mind because my kids keep trying to spin me in my office chair. Still, as I wait in the preschool pickup line, my emotions get the best of me and I realize how much I actually missed my kids during the day. That all quickly changes though, as you'll see in the string of texts I've sent my partner when it's time to pick up my children:
Vacation Is Over, Folks
The night before heading home from vacation is the most depressing night of the trip. Sure, we should probably be living it up or relaxing on our last night away from "real life," but when the thoughts of the long drive or flight home begin to flood my mind, I'm more upset about leaving vacation than I was for not having been on one in a long time in the first place.
That's sort of how it feels when I leave my house to pick my children from preschool. Getting work done without them making ridiculous demands all day sort of feels like a vacation, and knowing that the vacation is over is, well, a little sad sometimes.
Those Sliding Doors Though
I was the person who said I would never be caught dead in a mini van. No matter how practical or efficient they may be, I vowed my devotion to SUVs a long time ago. So, you can imagine my surprise when I was sitting in the pickup line and the mom in front of me hops out of her van like a boss and opens both doors with the click of a button; her kids load up with ease and speed, without her once scrambling or wrestling with a seat belt, and before I've even had time to catch the make of her van, she's already gone.
Loading multiple kids into a small car of SUV sort of sucks, but loading them into a van looked so easy and amazing.
You're Not Really A Mom Until You Test Drive A Van
Maybe I'm actually missing out on something. Maybe the moms who drive mini vans are actually onto something. Maybe they didn't give up a life of compact cute cars and luxury, because the mini van is actual luxury.
The Best Reality TV Ever
One kid went rogue and took off across the parking lot. Another is literally being dragged out kicking and screaming like he's a wounded warrior, and another is protesting movement entirely by holding her ground as her mother tries to welcome her into the family van. There's yoga pants and business suits and stay-at-home-dads who bring the teachers cupcakes. There's kids covered in mud and high fructose corn syrup, and there's some who are dressed like they're going to mass. There is no shortage of entertainment in the pickup line. It is truly an eye opening experience.
Seriously Though, Model Material
The first time I saw my boys in their little backpacks, I cried like a freaking baby. They were so adorable and so handsome and they looked so smart and grown up. What is it about a kid in a backpack that makes my heart flutter?
I Mean, They're Basically Teenagers Now
I didn't just cry when we bought the backpacks. Nope, I've cried several times since my boys went back to school behind the safety of my sunglasses during pickup. When they come out of that building holding hands and wearing their backpacks, they look so proud and so grown up. It's just the best.
Gosh, I Just Love Them So Much
I love picking my boys up from school. Sure, it does feel like the end of a vacation sometimes, and I understand that my naivety pertaining to what the rest of my day is going to be like is completely unrealistic, but those first few minutes with them in the car after school melt my heart.
Get Over Here And Let Me Squeeze Those Cheeks
Fact: kids get cuter while they are in the care of someone else.
Oh, They Say The Darnest Things
Those cute little nuggets in the back seat frequently take it upon themselves to insult my singing and dancing. I don't understand it myself. I mean, who doesn't love to jam to some Iggy Azalea in the preschool pickup line?
Reality Has Set In
Yup, there's my boys. I remember why I dreaded picking them up shortly after they've been buckled in. Also, I could feed a village with all the food that's on my floor as a result of my kids pelting their snacks at my head. Ah, parenthood.
The Cuteness Was Short Lived
Seriously, though. Parents should be allowed to pay extra so that they can drive a few laps around the block to get psyched up for bringing their kids home from school.
Test Drive Anyone?
I'm not even ashamed to admit it anymore. I want a mini van, and my partner does too. I don't care how "uncool" it is. All I care about is those freaking amazing sliding doors and the leg room that goes on for days. And the cup holders. So many cup holders.