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Preschool Share Day Blues

April 7, 2008

Preschool Share Day Blues

My preschool son asks
is it my share day?

I am that kind of mommy
who doesn’t know
and must admit this to h

and the school: I ask and am told
it is posted right there where we sign in.

Well where my husband signs him in
and my sister signs him out on Tuesday
and I sign him out on Thursday and Friday.

We miss it, we miss it, we miss share day.
We miss it again.
I am picking him up and
my son asks, when is it my share day?
I look on the board: Today.
Your share day was today.

He is dashed
then recovers with
that’s ok, I can do it
another day
can’t I?

Can he?
I look at Teacher Amy hopefully.
No, she says, his group may not
have another share day.
Preschool will be out soon, she says.

He stands up to my waist,

red hair boy short,
curls long gone.
He will go to kindergarten next fall.
He will have missed out
on preschool share day.

Oh no I think, I failed again.

She gives us permission
to bring something tomorrow

which is now today
and he doesn’t know what to bring.

It is time to leave for school,
time for my husband to be at work:
What to bring what to bring?

I want to bring my green car, he says.
The fast green car from
last Saturday’s birthday party
which he rolls swiftly down
the corner of the raised carpet.

I groan.
Don’t you want to share
something more special?

This green car is special he says.

His dad and I decide on pictures
we just got back from our trip to Yosemite.

He likes that idea. We rummage
for a small photo album to place them in
work together to order them.

.He rushes around for things

to share: he collects
the green car from Leon’s birthday party
a ducks tattoo and sticker from the hockey game he went to with his dad and cousins
a pinball maze toy from Monday’s trip to Trader Joes
a Diego and Dora

cd of games we’ve never played
a Sponge Bob Squarepants book “Ice Cream Dreams.”

I have six things, he says,

one two three four five six things to share.

We have the photos from our trip see
in this little book I explain
you get to bring one thing;
this is what we’re bringing.

Just one thing he wails,
I only get to bring one thing??

Look, I say, it’s full of pictures!
Let’s count one two three four…
see here’s the pictures of us skiing

and rock climbing
our friends
our campfire
see lots and lots of pictures.

You can tell everyone about our trip.

When I pick him up,
I ask how share day went.

It wasn’t his group, he says,
so he didn’t share, but
Teacher Amy asked him
at the last minute
and he shared the book

of pictures.

Next time, maybe I should just
let him share his green car and
know that what really matters

is not the thing he shares

but our life experiences
–teaching him how to ski

to climb to explore to love–
that shapes how he moves
and grooves in the world.

For more about our trip to Yosemite, go to staynplay.

Visit other participants in the Poetry Train

Visit other participants in the readwritepoem

I hope to upload some other pics from share day soon…(have you read yet that I hate the new WordPress Dashboard??)

14 Comments leave one →
  1. April 7, 2008 3:51 pm

    I like these lines:

    ‘I have six things, he says,
    one two three four five six things to share.’

    That’s a perfect kid moment. Wonderful poem, full of the dual sets of crises that caring for young children is filled with. The one the child experiences, the one the parent experiences.

  2. April 7, 2008 3:56 pm

    Thanks, Julia! Those dual crisis are such the challenge– manage which crisis first? which crisis is the one that matters?

    I am surprised at how lengthy it is and as I revise it I am sure I will see how to tighten it up so that it is not a novella!

  3. April 7, 2008 3:57 pm

    You made that kid come out of the page for us!

    wicked witch

  4. April 7, 2008 4:03 pm

    i thought at first you meant I was the wicked witch then realized you’re referring to your poem, wicked witch! i look forward to getting over there and reading it, gautami. and glad the poem made the boy come alive for you!

  5. April 7, 2008 6:26 pm

    This put me right back in my daughter’s preschool days when I missed sending a gift for her Christmas party. I had the day wrong. It happens when we are all so busy! We, too, took the kids skiing and you are right; that is much more important than remembering all that nursery school stuff.

    I adore this poem!

  6. April 7, 2008 10:42 pm

    Aww . . . you missed share day. We have done that sort of thing too. Glad you got a second chance!



  7. April 8, 2008 12:02 am

    in my humble opinion you blew it.. it was his share day not yours.. i so wish you had ended up letting him take the things he chose…..

  8. April 8, 2008 12:52 am

    not to sound too defensive but…Parenting is sooo tricky, esp in the moment! It is hard to know what to do, which direction is most important. If I was on the outside, looking in, w/ no kids, I’d agree with you Paisley. Or if he was a bit older than 4…

    if I’d had it to do over, I would have had him figure out what he wanted the night before–instead of in the last mad rush before getting out the door. Nights are usually a mad rush of dinner together and bath time…

    He was only allowed to bring 1 thing too, and the teachers really don’t want them to bring toys. (what else does a kid want to bring anyway??)

    He has often asked to bring in a special song or book and we’ve arranged to do that.

    Right now he is cutting and pasting squares–pasting from the smallest to the largest squares he cut from orange paper. He’s sitting in the sun, naked, because his clothes were all wet from playing in the water. It is something to watch them engrossed in a prpject of his own creation….

  9. April 8, 2008 12:53 am

    Linda, glad you adored the poem and to both Lindas, that it toook you abck to when your kids were this age!

  10. April 8, 2008 4:26 am

    So much complication in family lives. You tell a good tale.

  11. April 8, 2008 7:51 pm

    i completely emphathize with you on this…
    so heartbreaking
    and then there are so many things going on around us,
    so many things to know and to remember and to handle…
    it’s hard to be on top of everything…
    there are days when i don’t feel on top of

    great poem.

  12. April 9, 2008 2:45 am

    We always second guess ourselves as parents, and beat ourselves up too. I have two sons. I’m sure if I don’t remember my missteps with them, they will remind me!

    I enjoyed your poem. It’s obvious how much he means to you.

  13. vcrobin permalink
    April 12, 2008 8:57 pm

    A baseball player who hits 3 pitches out of ten is considered a star – take heart! Your parenting average is waaaaay better than that. Love the photo. You’ve reminded me of a little girl I remember fondly – her mother forgot the class field trip and they arrived too late and missed the bus. For the rest of the year, whenever that little girl wanted something from her mom, she’d say wistfully, “I didn’t get to go on the bus.” It made me laugh every time (her mom laughed, too – she was a teacher and she knew she was being hustled).

  14. April 12, 2008 9:14 pm

    great story, vc robin! thanks for sharing it as well as the reminder about winning stats! i do think overall we’re doing well but my goodness, it can be challenging!

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