The other night was the first PTA meeting at Hannah’s school. Seeing as she is in Kindergarten and I will be walking this school’s halls presumably for the next 8 years, I decided it would be a good idea to become involved early. I looked forward to meeting a few other moms, and learning how the school operates. I was excited when I walked into the school library and saw Hannah’s teacher standing there.
You see, I had this special relationship with Hannah’s preschool teachers. She was there since 7 months old and I had no problem laughing with them about the silly and crazy things she did during the day. I trusted them to tell me if she displayed horrendous behavior. I was comfortable venting to them about the hard days. And crying to them when I was in complete despair, unable to cope with the stage she may have been in at that moment. I saw them Every Day. I understood how and what she was doing Every Day.
And now, at Kindergarten, there’s none of that. This was the first chance I was going to have to see how Hannah was doing. What the teacher’s very first impressions were of my girl.
Honestly, I was terrified. Was I going to hear she cries every day? That she visits the nurse each morning for some ailment? That she bosses other kids around? That she doesn’t say a word all day? Or worse, would Mrs. G tell me, “Oh, she’s doing Fine.” (I have this love/hate relationship with the word fine.)
I hesitantly approached the teacher and reintroduced myself to her. “Hi, Mrs. G.” I started, unsure whether I was supposed to address her with the same name Hannah does or call her by her first name. I decided to err on the side of caution. Luckily the teacher is close to my mother’s age so calling her Mrs. wasn’t too uncomfortable as it may have been if she was ten years younger than me.
“I’m Hannah’s mom, Becca.” I continued.
“Oh, right, HI!” she responded. Phew, at least she knew which one Hannah WAS.
“I just wanted to find out how Hannah is doing? Is she doing ok?” Usually I would have added something sarcastic here, like, “she hasn’t punched anyone in the face yet, has she?”, but I (surprisingly) was smart and decided to keep it safe (and normal). I didn’t want to be that “weird mom”.
“Oh yes, she’s doing just fine!” Ugh, Just Fine.
“She’s a HOOT!” A Hoot?
“She actually correctly informed me today that I was wearing a Cowl Neck shirt.” That’s. My. Girl.
I beamed with pride. At first. I mean, really, Mrs G. must now know how BRILLIANT Hannah is for knowing this. What Kindergartner knows what a Cowl Neck is? Huh?
But my pride quickly faded as I realized the teacher wasn’t quite beaming along with me. Because maybe that’s just ODD that a Kindergartner knows what a cowl neck is. Maybe the teacher was actually Judging me as a mom, thinking that I find it necessary to tell my little girl all of the different types of shirt styles. Little did she know that Hannah as a matter of face WOULD be able to identify a “halter”, “strapless”, “spaghetti strap”, “3/4 length sleeve”, “mock turtleneck”, “boat neck”, “one shoulder”, “off the shoulder”, and empire waist”. Maybe she was thinking how materialistic that is of me to talk about such drivel in my home.
Or maybe I was overthinking. (Who me?)
But that’s all I got that night. That Hannah is doing just fine, is a hoot and is up on the latest fashions.
Did I want to hear that Mrs G was impressed by Hannah’s reading skills, large vocabulary and ability to count by 10’s? Yes. Did I hope she’d tell me how sweet Hannah is and that everyone loves her and wants to be her friend? Of course. Did I dream of her pulling me aside and whispering to me out of earshot of all the other moms, “Hannah is actually my favorite. I’ve never had a student as wonderful as her.” Um, well, yeah.
But she might not know any of that. Yet.
So for now, I’ll be proud that Hannah HAS made an impression. Any impression. Is making her personality known. Isn’t shy to speak up about what interests her. And gave the teacher the opportunity to use the word, “Hoot”.
I’m doubting she says that to all the moms.