Friday, August 3, 2012

School Supplies

I love office supply stores. I really do. I could wander aimlessly through the aisles for hours, dreaming about organizational systems, getting lost in the hundreds of colors of paper I could buy, twirling on office chairs and marveling at the things that have been invented to help streamline processes in our day that we never dreamed needed streamlining. I love the vibe of potential creativity that leaps off the shelves.

So, when we were handed a bright yellow kindergarten supply list at orientation this week, I practically salivated. Finally, after years of having no purpose to enjoy the back-to-school section of Target, here we were.  A nice, orderly list of what my son would need to start his academic career off right. It looked just like what I probably brought to kindergarten back in 1984.  Crayons, #2 pencils, bookbag, glue, scissors, folders, jump drive...oh wait, I'm  pretty sure that last one didn't even exist back then nor did the possibility of a classroom of kindergarteners even having use of a computer   but hey, I guess times do change in 28 years, right? It is still beyond me to know what he'll need it for, but purchase it we did.

I spent a joyful afternoon (go ahead and judge me now) labeling all of our purchases with my electronic labeler, a device which with I would rather give away my microwave rather than part. There is something so nerdily satisfying about a nice, neat label on an unscratched and unsoiled object, even with the knowledge that after probably 2 hours in a kindergarten classroom all of the crayons will be broken, there will be marker stains on the lunchbox, the folders will be dog-eared and that little purple jump drive will probably already be missing, having been unwittingly flushed down the toilet or crammed in some kid's ear. 

So here we are. Three weeks away from kindergarten having survived a process more complicated than some experience to get to college. There are nerves abounding. There are some last minute skills to hone, not least of which is getting the poor child to remember how to spell "Ogrosky." Half the adults I know can't spell it after years of knowing me.  The smell of crayons and freshly sharpened pencils is in the air, if not the scent of fall quite yet. Time will tell how my child fares on his first day- will he throw up like his mother did? (True story, I'm sad to say.) I hope for his sake that his first day is a smidge less dramatic.

For now, we'll keep practicing our last name and pray for his teachers and new friends-to-be.  And gaze at our superhero-saturated school supplies probably once a day, dreaming dreams of how they'll be used and all the exciting new things he'll experience during this major life transition.   Kindergarten, here we come.

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