I have to go to Back-to-School Night at my oldest son’s school tonight. I ain’t happy about it. I know that some of you may think I am a terrible parent for feeling this way, but these are the 10 reasons why these evenings make me miserable.
- There is no food. I’m middle-aged; therefore, if I am anywhere between 6-8 I expect to eat. It doesn’t have to be fancy—a ritz cracker with some cheese, a few nuts—anything! You are talking about a syllabus and I’m thinking about a steak.
- It’s a fucking inconvenience. You know those kids that we are talking about? When they were younger, I had to find someone to keep them while we are at back-to-school night. Now, I have to pray that things go well while we are gone. I direct a pretty regulated evening (homework, dinner, reading, bed) on weekdays. When I am out, things don’t go as well.
- The teachers talk, but they don’t really say anything. If I’m there, give me the real scoop: you do surprise notebook checks; you are harder on kids who sit in the back of the room; 40% of kids fail your class so you should try to get your kids transferred to the easier math teacher.
- I know that teachers don’t want to be there anymore than the parents do (I’m only speaking for us rogue parents). I get it: you guys work your butts off. Who needs an evening with us parents?
- After working all day, my brain doesn’t feel like smiling and being fake with all of the other parents. I’m sorry, but it’s true. I’ll never see these people again. We adults pretty-much have our friendships established, so finding out whose kid is whose and making small talk makes my brain hurt.
- If you’ve done it once, you’ve done it enough. It’s the same year after year.
- Selfishly, I only care about MY kid. While you are talking generally, honestly, I just want to get to the specifics. Is the boy doing what the heck he’s supposed to be doing or do I need to go home and get in dat ass?
- The chairs/desks are uncomfortable. They were uncomfortable when I was a kid. They are brutal now that I am 30 pounds heavier.
- I have flashbacks to when I was in school. College rocked; middle and high school -not so much. I would’ve been cool to never go back.
- There is always THAT parent. You know the one. He is going to ask dumb ass questions to show how interested he is in his child’s education—the proverbial brown-noser. At this point in the evening I am ravenous and uncomfortable, so it’s tough for me not to roll my eyes, just as I would have in high school.
Despite all of these reasons, I will get myself dressed in my one “momfit” (an outfit that yells, I’m an involved, awesome mother, “Leave It To Beaver”, perfect mother), so that you know that my child is loved. I want you to know that he has a family who cares about him and his education. Please see him fully and give him your best because tonight I will give you mine—despite…
My intention is for Black people to love themselves and each other. It sounds somewhat silly, I guess; but oftentimes my people are overwhelmed with negative images, bad news, and stereotyped characters about us. I’d like to flip that script. I’d like to remind us, as often as I can, how incredible we are. Read more