Yesterday, I was feeling a little frazzled, so I dressed them while we were still in the parking lot. I had just finished putting Carolyn and William in their suits, and placed them outside of the car, while I tried to finish getting a very difficult Elizabeth ready.
Just then, an elderly woman walked up to the car next to us and opens the trunk.
Instantly, she was descended upon by four-year-olds who talk and talk and talk.
They wanted to know her name. They told her their names, their full names. They wanted to know if she was a girl or a boy. They wanted to know what she dressed up for at Halloween. They thought it was important to tell her, as they stood beside her and sized her up, that she would make a really good giant. They wanted to know if she was their Grandmother. They wanted to know if she had a baby in her tummy. They wanted to know what she was having for dinner. They wanted to tell her that they were four-years-old, not three, and they stood there in their little bathing suits and shoes, awkwardly holding out four little fingers.
"This many. This is how old I am."
William told the woman all about his imaginary friend, Tresiam. Elizabeth pointed out her new bathing suit. And Carolyn felt compelled to tell this absolute stranger that mommy was angry and she spanked Elizabeth because Elizabeth kept kicking her shoes in to the parking lot that mommy had just put on and mommy said, "YOU KNOCK IT OFF!"
All of these conversations were happening simultaneously.
She was being bombarded by four-year-old chatter.
It was outrageously funny for me to see the dazed look that washed over the woman's face. She didn't know who to listen to or what to say. She just stood there, gripping her cane tightly and saying "Oh, my dear Lord! Oh, my dear Lord!"
Tomorrow, I'll be dressing the children in the locker room.
"That's it. Close the door and be very, very quiet!"
With all that has been happening with preschool, for the past several days, I've been telling the children that I don't want them to eat the food that the school provides. I've even gone so far as to tell them that I am thinking about taking them out of school and teaching them at home. When I've asked them what they think of that idea, William will get excited and say, "Mommy! I'd love it if you teach me!! You teach me, Mom?!"
So this morning while we were at school, the children stride up to the front gate, and while I'm holding a fussy and wriggling Henry, William tells the Director that he doesn't eat JUNK, Carolyn tells the Director that mommy was angry and spanked Elizabeth for kicking off her shoes at the YMCA, and Elizabeth pipes up that mommy is going to teach us at HOME.
I really must temper what I say and how I act around these children. Soon, they'll be telling the whole world that mommy had wine and ice cream for dinner last night and let the baby eat yogurt straight out of the carton.
And then almost all of my flaws will be revealed.