I am bracing myself for a new season. Yes, the holidays are over and a new year is upon us. It's not the change of a new year I'm steeling myself against. It's not the long days, or the chill that will linger long into March.
It's the season of the Incomplete School Week.
If you have small children attending school of any sort, you know what I mean. Winter, along with nice things like hot cocoa and Christmas and frosty windowpanes, brings along an arsenal of tools to ensure that no matter how long your to-do list, how short your temper, or how much money you've dumped into tuition, your children will not see a complete week of school until after Spring Break.
How does Miss Winter do it? First, she takes advantage of weakened immune systems and post-holiday sugar binges to bring on one nasty bug after another. Kids been out of school for nearly 3 weeks? How about another day or two of "quality" time together, thanks to a well-timed fever. She can't wipe you all out at once, either. No, as soon as one kid gets well enough to trot off to school, the other is sure to come down with the funk.
So you finally get everyone healthy at the same time and along comes the Snow Day. Loved by every teacher, cursed by every mother.
The Snow Days are conveniently scattered throughout the weeks that aren't affected by the winter "holidays." Snow Day on the same day as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day or President's Day? Dream on.
Just when you think that surely, surely nothing else could come up and perhaps the children could all attend a full week of school for just once this winter? I promise you, something freaky will happen. Pipes will freeze and burst only in your school. Head lice. Anthrax. I speak from experience (well, maybe not with anthrax. It's probably only a matter of time, though).
In an especially evil mutation of Murphy's Law, if your child only goes to school on certain days of the week, those will be the only days affected. For example, Eli attends school Monday through Wednesday. These are the only days he gets sick/school is cancelled/holidays occur. Thursdays and Friday though out winter are guaranteed to be healthy, sunny and fully functional.
Brace yourself, fellow mothers. There's nothing else you can do. May your craft box be fully stocked, your DVR full and your supply of wine plentiful.