10 Reasons I’m Not Ready for School



I think I speak for all of us when I say our kids have been driving us INSANE all summer! HALLELUJAH AND HEAVEN ON A POPSICLE STICK, school is FINALLY here again! I’ve been marking off the days on my calendar and jiggly-dancing with unbridled joy! YESSSSSSSSSSS!!!!


Wait, wha??? No, I haven’t.


I’m not ready for school to start at all! I mean, I understand the theory in concept: the fewer kids there are in the house, the quieter the house, the less crap to clean up, the fewer disputes to mediate, etc… I get that. But there are worse things, comrades!


1. I have to start setting my alarm clock again. Oh, COME ON! I just settled into my stay-up-‘til-one-and-sleep-‘til-nine schedule. The kids know how to turn on the TV in the morning, pour themselves a bowl of cereal, and leave me the heck alone. And now I have to readjust to getting up at the butt-crack of dawn again? AND I have to give up my precious late-night alone time? Would someone please pass me a tissue? *sniff*


2. And don’t even get me started on the morning routine. Coaxing my son out of bed while it’s still dark is like trying to disarm a bomb; you just never know when he might go off. And once my grumpy little troll has at last been pried from his mattress with the Jaws of Life, he slumps listlessly in front of his oatmeal in a catatonic state, eyes glazed over and a string of drool dangling precariously from one corner of his mouth. I have to practically shove food down his throat so he doesn’t end up starving at eleven in the morning and having a meltdown in class. Getting dressed is so difficult that I had to make a chart for him. Underwear first, son, pants next. (Doesn’t it seem like that would be obvious?)


3. I have to make my kid’s lunch every morning, before I’ve even had my coffee. I mean, I don’t HAVE to… but the stuff they serve in the cafeteria… well I’m not sure it can really be classified as food. And the school lets the kids choose what they put on their tray, so many kids’ cafeteria lunches consist of a slice of pizza, a brownie, an ice-pop, and chocolate milk. My kid has ADHD; if he ate a lunch like that, he would probably explode. That would be a trifle traumatizing for his classmates, I think. And for all you organized super-moms who are about to suggest I make his lunch the evening before? Uh… well, I don’t have a snappy come-back for you. You’re absolutely right, I should totally do that. But I won’t, because I’m not that organized. So there.


4. School-year grooming is more demanding than summer-time grooming. We can get away with lackadaisical hygiene over the summer – but when school is in session, teachers, administrators, other moms, the janitor… they will all judge me if my kid’s hair is too long, he stinks, there’s dirt under his nails, or a little wax is showing in his ear canal. These are all things which, during summer, can be swept under the proverbial rug. After all, the pool is anti-microbial, right? (Until someone’s kid takes a shit in it, then not so much, I guess.)


5. My kid has to get used to wearing shoes other than flip-flops again. After a summer of nothing but Crocs and flip-flops, regular shoes (no open-toed or sling-backs, per the dress code!) suddenly feel like medieval-torture devices. “My shoes feel weird, Mommy.” “Something’s rubbing/pinching/squishing/scratching me, Mommy.” “There’s a wrinkle in my sock, Mommy.” I need another tissue, please. Or a Xanax.


6. Schedules get crazy during the school year. The mere act of programming all the obligatory meetings and appointments into my phone calendar exhausts me. And that’s before I actually DO any of the stuff. During the summer we lazily float through the days, and all the fun stuff we do is on impulse, just how we like it. But the school year is a highly-scheduled smorgasbord of after-school activities, teacher conferences, required volunteer hours, birthday parties, school recitals, project due-dates… just kill me now.


7. Homework once again becomes part of the daily routine. I’m sorry, weren’t you just in school for six hours, kid? They couldn’t squeeze enough learning into SIX HOURS? Ya gotta do an extra hour at home while I’m trying to fold laundry and cook dinner? I thought I was done with homework when I graduated college; this is a fresh new hell.


8. During the school year, the kids need to be on a consistent bed-time routine. No more “if you rub/walk on/scratch Mommy’s back, you get to stay up later” crap. They actually require a certain number of hours of sleep to function at optimal capacity, and it’s on me to make sure they get it.


9. Fundraisers. Here’s a hundred bucks, school. NOW LEAVE ME ALONE.


10. When big kids go back to school, little ones at home lose their playmates. This is probably a good thing if your kids can’t stand each other. And if you don’t have little ones at home, this obviously doesn’t apply to you. But my seven and three-year-olds are best friends and play together all day long with only infrequent altercations. (Knocking on wood right now; I’m not an idiot.) When my son goes into second grade, my daughter will inevitably force me to sludge through countless hours of My Little Pony, following her impromptu script for what each of the characters are supposed to say. The worst thing about this is that I actually know all the Pony’s personalities and dialects, and am incapable of performing my part without being fully in character. If you have any concept of how distinct each of the main characters of My Little Pony are, you know how much skill this requires. Go ahead, clap. I’ll wait.


And if you want to know the real truth… I’ll miss my son while he’s at school. There. I said it. So sue me. It’s true: in spite of my incessant whining about how my kids are always underfoot and driving me crazy with their noise, I do actually kind of like having them – both of them – around.


  1. 1

    ThePioneerMom says

    Absolutely! My kids will also need to adjust from wearing either nothing, underwear, or bathing suits to real life clothes. Matter of fact, that means I need to change out of my PJs to bring them to school. Damn! Good luck, Mommas!!

    • 2

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      Oh yeah… I didn’t even think about the fact that I have to also put a little effort into self-maintenance into MYSELF! No more days of lying around bra-less for half the day…

  2. 3

    rebecca at thisfineday says

    My oldest is about to enter kindergarden and I’m dreading ALL of this! Though I am looking forward to the peace school can bring. We’ve travelled a lot this summer and routine sounds amazing at times, but early mornings are going to kill me!! Hopefully I survive :-)

    • 4

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      The ONE thing I like about school is the routine. We all function better on a routine, as much as I loathe to admit it!

  3. 5

    Becky says

    I have been attempting a preemptive strike to get my manlette ready for the school year, but it hasn’t gone as planned; he will be fine, I’m sure; he adjusts better than me at most things. I am still not looking forward to the daily dose of hairy eyebrow at 6:30am! :)

    • 6

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      That really is the worst part. There are mornings when I positively want to STRANGLE my kid for his lack of participation in the morning. It’s like trying to dress and angry, semi-comatose gorilla.

        • 8

          Becky says

          Ever try reversing the roles? It’s rather fun to watch your child’s face when you refuse to get out of bed and then start whining, “but I don’t waaaaannaaaaa” at them. :)

  4. 9

    Lawry says

    We survived day one of kindy with minimal gripes but the shoes are going over like a lead balloon..(we are in FL so flip flops are year round attire) he hates his cool 60 dollar sneakers on his feet!!!

    • 10

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      We’re also in Florida! It’s still way too hot to justify total foot-enclosure. I’m with my kid on hating the shoes. Stupid rules. ;)

    • 14

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      That’s what I keep hearing! But my kids are completely in love with each other; it’s borderline incestuous. I should probably stop saying that. It’s creepy.

  5. 15

    Jenny says

    Amen sister friend. I have all teenagers and still, a-freaking-men. I dread the beginning of the school year for pretty much all of these reasons. Especially the missing them part. Now that mine are getting so old, I know what’s coming and it makes me want to wrench each possible “moment” out of them now.

    Congrats on the Scary Mommy gig!! Proud of you.

    • 16

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      Oh wow. Yes, I think about that too, even though mine are little. I have this wonderful aunt who always reminds me how quickly their childhood will pass, and that I need to relish every second. She’s annoying sometimes… but I know she is 100% right!

      Thanks for your support! <3

    • 17

      Suzie says

      I used to hate those old ladies who warned me to “enjoy every moment because it goes SO fast” but NOW I tell all of you LISTEN TO ME—IT GOES SOOOO FAST!!! My oldest will be a senior this year and I almost lost it when I took him to have his headshot done for the yearbook. It just can’t be possible. We thought we’d have this idyllic little summer together and he got a GIRLFRIEND! and then he was selected to go to some gifted summer camps for five weeks away at some colleges…we hardly saw him. One week at the beach together and he spent most of the time texting his girlfriend.

      You never know how much time you really have “left” so to speak. I never despised summers together with him and I don’t mind school starting, either. His little brother is eight. I will definitely make more effort to slow down and enjoy even more because every cliché about time flying by is a bittersweet truth!

      • 18

        Jenny says

        Suzy! I feel your pain. I have one who is a sophomore in college and my daughter is a senior. We’re having her headshots taken TOMORROW, and already I’m gazing at her toddler pictures and getting weepy.

        I try to not be all granny like and dispense my “old mom” wisdom too much, but damn. It goes by in a heartbeat, doesn’t it? I’m jealous that you have an 8 year old. My baby is 13 and God help both of us, I’m squeezing every last bit of childhood out of him.

        Thanks for your commiseration :) And good luck this year! The senior year of high school is a freaking weepfest…JUST WAIT TIL GRADUATION.

    • 21

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      I just don’t do them. I volunteer. I seriously would just write them a check though, if they would stop sending all that shit home with my kid. Giant tubs of cookie-dough? Right before the gluttonous holiday-season? WTF. NO THANKS.

      • 22

        Motherunit says

        Cookie dough is not so bad. At least people want it. Watch out for those catalogs they come home with. Overpriced crap like a little tin containing about a dozen jellybeans for $8, or a cup of caramel corn in a bag for $7. Hard to sell, because everyone has seen these before and know that they’re a rip-off.

        The absolute worst was when I was a child in catholic school. The Cleveland diocese put out a weekly newspaper called the Universe Bulletin. All of us catholic school kids were forced to sell subscriptions. Trouble was, if a family was catholic, they had kids of their own in a catholic school. There were way more kids than potential customers.

        • 23

          Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

          Oh yeah. That’s pretty bad. Here they do these horrible coupon books. They’re THIRTY dollars. Who has that kind of money to blow on all their neighbor’s kids’ fundraisers???

          • 24

            Motherunit says

            Coupon books! Aaarrgh! Only a handful of coupons are for places anywhere near where you live. Only a few of those are for any place you’d want to go. And they’re ALL two-fers. All of them.

  6. 25

    Julie says

    Yes. This. This is the first year of kinder for my youngest, so not only all of this, but suddenly I’m thrust into a brand new phase of life and I have no idea what to do about it. I thought all the changes were over — I’m a mom now, they can’t surprise me anymore right? Wrong. :/ I’d give anything for another week.

    • 26

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      Oh… the changes never stop. I’m having uterus issues now. And one morning I woke up with a new wrinkle on the side of my mouth, a really big one. Like a dimple, except not adorable. It just appeared, and NEVER WENT AWAY.

      The changes will keep coming; brace yourself. ;)

  7. 27

    Denise says

    I hate crocs and flip flops, so wearing normal shoes is one thing I don’t have to worry about.

    You wanna know what’s the best thing ever? Getting all the kids in school! It’s like mommy finally gets her vacation!

    • 28

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      That’s what I hear. But I truly dread putting my youngest in kindergarten. Mainly because she practically takes care of herself; at this very moment she’s coloring quietly by herself at the kitchen table.

  8. 29

    Mercy says

    When my son dresses himself, he loves to just skip the underwear. I think he gets it from daddy, who does not wear underwear at home. (But is sure to when out.)

    • 30

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      THAT is hilarious. My boy is a bit squeamish about that kind of stuff. THANK GOD. lol

  9. 31

    Anita @ Losing Austin says

    I’m so with you on this one- even though I work FT, so the alarm clock and schedule didn’t change for me, not having to get the kiddos up and at em and not making lunch and most importantly- not arguing about homework!- made me not ready. But now we’re in week 3 and I’m settling in. I guess.

    • 32

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      We’re on week two. So far so good… Lucas loves his teacher so that is really helpful! =)

  10. 33

    Mom off meth says

    One of my boys wore the same shirt for two months. Wanted to set a record. I washed it when I could, but if he didnt stink, why not let him live the dream? Less laundry for me. That would never fly during school. I am dreading the schedule too. Ugh.

    • 34

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      Next summer I will present this challenge to my son. I will do just about anything to have less laundry.

  11. 35

    Barri says

    Just yesterday I was playing with my daughter and she said, “Rainbow Dash wouldn’t say that!”. So I feel your pain when it comes to the My Little Pony stuff. :)

  12. 39

    Melissa says

    My son starts preschool in September. Half of me wants to weep because he is growing up, the other half is already planning what I’m going to do with those 9 childless hours each week (I’m thinking nap?) He is an early riser but I am not. I think it will be harder on me to get up & get him out the door!

    • 40

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      Nap? Read? Drink coffee while it’s still hot? Poop alone? The possibilities are ENDLESS.

  13. 41

    HD says

    This was my favorite line:
    “Uh… well, I don’t have a snappy come-back for you. You’re absolutely right, I should totally do that. But I won’t, because I’m not that organized. So there.”

    It hits home for me, pre-twin I was the picture of organization. Now I’m all, “What do you MEAN I missed PreK orientation?”

    • 42

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      I secretly prayed during each of my pregnancies that they would be twins. But like they always say: God only gives you what you can handle. ;)

      • 43

        HD says

        I secretly prayed for twins as well once I realized how unfunny my husband thought it was when I’d talk about it. Lo and behold, the ultrasound showed two little hearts. My husband went pale as a sheet, I cried tears of joy and have had fodder for blog postings out the wazoo.

  14. 45

    Ariana says

    ugghhh, I so agree. My 3 sons are now done with K-12, and I went through these feelings every single year for…a lot of years. Now I am dreading the 2 days per week I have to deal with my step-daughters schedules, pick up, drop off, soccer…or is it dance today? I love summer….

    • 46

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      My phone calendar is already bursting at the seams, and I only have two kids. I don’t how people do it when they have a van full of kids. I bow down to them.

  15. 47

    Tina Amorim Yates says

    our school just implemented school uniforms so I'm really not looking forward to that morning battle.

    • 48

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      We do uniforms, too. In a way it’s easier, because there’s no big school shopping trip and there’s no “deciding” on what to wear. But WHAT THE EFF WERE THEY THINKING MAKING LITTLE KIDS TUCK THEIR SHIRT IN AND WEAR A BELT. Everyone knows kids hate that!

  16. 49

    Sharon Zadik says

    Your forgot the video game detox that goes along with the start of school. I can't wait. Your post is me to a tee! Loved it

    • 50

      Kristen Mae at Abandoning Pretense says

      With Lucas, it’s his tablet. But I use it as leverage; if he has a good day at school, he can still have some tablet time in the evenings. ;)

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