The End-of-Season Hot Dog Party

7 05 2009

It’s that time of year again, and by “that time”, I mean time to e-mail my son’s teacher asking her to hang in there. The school year is almost over. Please, please, please hang in there. And thank you for your infinite supply of patience. And sorry. For everything. Again.

The apologetic e-mails have become sort of a ritual for me, as he is precisely the type of student behind that dreary statistic saying that half of teachers quit within the first five years.

His teacher called two weeks ago from her cell phone in the middle of the school day to tell me that a repentant Roofie had wandered into the woods bordering the playground. She’d said his misbehavior had intensified over the last several weeks. Was there a certain time of day when he was at his worst? No. It started the moment he set foot in class every morning, and ended at 3 o’clock.

So yesterday I’d e-mailed her to ask if there’d been any improvement–any at all. No, she said. In fact, 10 minutes into a 90-minute bus ride to the museum, he was choking his seatmate. I’m embarrassed, and frankly, afraid to look other parents in the eye at this point.

Last semester he received an “unsatisfactory” in conduct. His biggest weakness: self-control.

But then there’s soccer. Post-game talk

The soccer field is the final frontier for us, the one place left where this kid fills me with so much good-to-the-last-drop mom pride, I could just cry. He’s got mad skills, and I find myself wooting on the sidelines every time he scores, or makes a beautiful pass, or weaves through three defenders as if he’s made of some diaphanous material. I’d made early season vows that I wouldn’t do it, that I wouldn’t be one of those moms. But I couldn’t help it.

Besides, it’s all I’ve got now. So what the hell. Grab a hot dog and some tissues. Soccer season’s over.

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