Saturday, September 29, 2007

Homecoming Weekend and the Blahs

Last night was the kind of night where I earned my "Bad Mommy" title. You see, I signed up to be a ... band parent helper, I guess you would call it, for the homecoming football game. In my case, since Danni is on guard, I volunteer to be "guard mom." Which would be fine, except there are three of us, and in all honesty, there really isn't anything for us to do. We could pass out the bottled water to them, except that they have a water crew that already does that. Basically, there are three of us standing around, watching them warm up, on alert in case someone has a uniform problem. In which case, I would be no help anyway, as I can barely sew an errant button back on.

As I was standing there, snarky thoughts were going through my head, such as:

That dark purple makeup they (guard) wear makes them look like someone punched them in both cheeks. When they're down on the football field it's barely noticible, but up close they just look scary.

Why do these girls need false eyelashes? This thought is fueled by the fact that in four games, we've bought three sets of the stupid things, because daughter keeps losing them. Trust me, when you're in the stands and they're down on the field, NO ONE can see their stupid EYELASHES!

Since it was homecoming, there were a lot of alumni band members there. Most of them are recent graduates, some of them ASU band members, who are really just freshman geeks in the ASU band, but of course when they come back to their high school, they all think they are the shit. Well...I am here to tell you that you are not. What you are is 18 and 19 year old punks. I asked one of the tuba players if they still played the Bud song (a staple for us when I was in ASU band), and his answer was "huh?" I said "You know, the Budweiser theme song?" He said.."uh, no...we don't play that." He didn't even know what I was talking about. Who are these guys? I know, we've become so PC that college students aren't allowed to play the Budweiser song, because it "promotes drinking." Who are we kidding here? I know what the ASU band does after games, and it doesn't involve root beer and pizza. Well, maybe pizza.

I don't know why, but everything was getting on my nerves last night, from the permanent bitch-face that the snotty, sorority girl-wannabe guard instructor seems to wear, to the "armchair coaches" behind me in the stands, to the girls I passed while I was going to the snack bar who were all "There's gonna be a girl fight!" and "oh no she din't" and "I'm gonna kick her ass!" Sigh. High school is just so...high school. I had no patience for stupid high school crap even when I was in high school, and strangely enough, 25 years later I have even less patience for it.

*Attention before you read the next part: If anyone reading this was ever homecoming queen, or part of the homecoming court, please skip this next paragraph, or if you don't skip it, just don't hate me.*

At halftime, of course we had the whole announcing the homecoming queen, king, and the various other class princes and princesses. Here's where my eyes roll to the back of my head. I hate this stuff. I hated it when I was in high school and we (the band) had to stand on the field and play some stupid song while all these people walked past and found out if they won or not. The football coach apparently thinks it's dumb too, as he won't let any players that are nominated come out at halftime for this illustrious ceremony. They have to have stand-in people. To me, it's just completely pointless. I mean, what high school really needs is one more popularity contest so that two people can feel like they are lords of the school, and the rest of everyone can feel like they're not quite as good. And now, from an adult perspective, is seems even more ridiculous.

So here's the part where I'm a bad mom. Or at least a bad band mom. I deserted my post. Remember how I said that as "guard moms" we didn't really do anything? Well, I bailed and went and sat with Steve and my parents. (Shannon and Kylie stayed home, thank you Shannon, I love you!) Here's another thing that bothered me: I was volunteering, right? So we walked in the gate behind the band, but then the almighty queen band mom informed me that if you didn't have a pass (what are these secret passes?), you had to buy a ticket. Really? I'm volunteering to help, but I have to pay to get into the game? Well, guess what? If I have to pay to get into the game, I'm damn well going to sit and watch the game. How selfish am I? I'm just not one of these gung-ho band parents that has to be involved in every game and every competition. It's funny too...I was in band in high school, and we never had parent helpers. We had a few "band-aides" (get it?) who were also students, whose job it was to dole out water and carry equipment. Our parents sat in a group in the stands, and cheered us on when we performed. That was it. Is this part of that "helicopter parenting" phenomenon, where we need 40 parent volunteers for a single football game for a band of 160 kids? It just really seems like big-time overkill to me. But then I feel like a bad mother because I'm not all gung-ho about it. Where does this mother guilt come from? My husband has never volunteered to help with any part of band. Do you think he feels guilty about that, sitting in the stands watching the game? Hell no! In fact, volunteering would never even cross his mind. It's not that that's necessarily bad, but why do I feel so guilty about this? Arrggghh.

*Small footnote, team wins homecoming game, I think the final was 42-0. We really have an easy schedule so far. Football team boosts record to 4-1.

Which brings us to this morning. I read over what I've written so far, and sit here and wonder why I have such a bad attitude. This is the "blah" part. We're leaving for vacation Monday morning, and there's a lot to do. In fact, right now Steve is out in the garage, changing the oil and filters in the van, and basically getting it ready to drive to San Diego. There is a lot to do in here: laundry, cleaning up (because I want to come home to a clean house), starting to think about packing, etc. Yet, I'm sitting here with no desire to do any of it. What I really want to do is go back upstairs, lay on my bed and watch the three episodes of Beverly Hills 90210 (I know!) that are on the Ti-faux right now. I'm not even excited about going on vacation. Why? I don't know. Maybe because a vacation with a 5 year-old isn't really a vacation? Why do I sit here and think of what a pain she's going to be instead of how much she loves Shamu? Why can't I just enjoy my kids, instead of getting mad at every little thing? Sometimes I worry that my kids are going to look back on their childhood, and remember me as always mad about something. I want to be that "fun mom" who really enjoys her kids, but I'm just not. And then here comes the guilt again. What the hell is wrong with me?

So, tonight is the homecoming dance. Right now, Danni has guard practice until noon. Then she's going to come home, shower, and spend the afternoon at T's house (the boy she's going to the dance with), and another couple. The four of them are spending the afternoon at T's house, then I think she's going to come home and get her dress and stuff and then go over to the other girl's house to get ready. Then other girl's mom is going to take all four of them to the dance. Hopefully someone will take pictures, because she won't be here in her dress for me to take pictures. I'm sure someone will. On the bright side, we do have our bowling league tonight, so at least adult conversation. Yay.

I so seriously want to go crawl back into bed. What is wrong with me? Steve's working on the van, Kylie's watching Saturday morning TV, and Shannon is still asleep. Nothing's stopping me really, except that guilt again, that I should be doing something to get ready for the trip. How can I go back up there and lie down when Steve is out sweating over my van? And the thing is, he wouldn't even mind if I did go back upstairs. Sigh. Ok, I guess I'm done venting now. Somehow I don't feel any better.

Almost forgot...last night before the game started, I was at the very top of the west stands, and there was this gorgeous sunset.


3 boys 1 girl said...

I hope that the quilt has left you by now. Please know that you are not alone in your thinking. I know you know that because of our conversations. Today was a horrid day here and I am not proud of my actions and do not have enough guts to post about it.

We are who we are and our kids do love us. We might not be those "fun" moms, but the kids know we love them and we do have fun.

I hope Danni had a great time at Homecoming. Post pictures asap.

Have fun with Shamu. Kylie will be fine and the girls will be there with you. It will be fun. I'll miss you.

Shelley said...

I think I'm over it, but possibly that's because I'm sitting at work right now, in blessed silence. :) I almost deleted this post, but I decided not to, since that's truly how I was feeling at the time, you know? I really hope they know I do love them, even though I tell them to leave me alone sometimes. :)

I don't even know yet how the dance went, because I haven't talked to her. I was asleep when she got home last night, and she was asleep when I left for work this morning. I stole the pictures off her camera, but I haven't seen her. lol I'm waiting to post until she tells me she had a good time. I was debating as to whether to post pictures, because there are other kids in them, but all those kids will have the same pics on their My Space pages before the day is out, so what's the difference, right?.

I'll miss you too! Thanks again for the bed, and I'll call you when we get back.

Lish said...

Hey, you one-upped me by volunteering that much...I don't do squat! And you know what? Paige doesn't want me to niether! She has friends who their moms are 'helicopter moms' and they hate it!

Anonymous said...

Our school require 16 hours of volunteering per year. Studies say that children of parents that are involved in the school do better. They figure if they force parents to come to the school that will make it happen. That it has nothing to do with the type of parent that is involved in their child's education makes a better student, not the actual having to be at the school. :/

I'm far from being a helicopter parent. I try to foster independence in my kids, and I think I've done a good job. :)


Shelley said...

Lish - After talking with Danni some, I've come to realize that I might not be so bad after all. She is absolutely fine with the small amount that I do. She was telling me how T and his mom are not getting along these days, and it's mostly because she's ALWAYS all up into everything he's doing. She's volunteering at every game, every competition, and she's just always there. As Danni would say, she's "all up in his grill all the time." lol I think Danni actually appreciates the fact that we're there (at the games), but we're over a couple of sections, and not all in her face, know what I mean? I felt much better after I talked to her, I think being there in the background, but not imposing, is the right balance for us.

Alice - the charter school where my kids went to elementary (and where Kylie is at preschool now) requires 50 hours per year, per family of volunteering. Then at the public jr high and high school, they don't require anything. I'm finding a balance, I think, between being supportive and yet staying out of the way. :)

I know exactly what you mean about fostering independence, because I'm the same way. My older girls are pretty good at doing for themselves, so now when Kylie asks me for something, if it's something I think she can do herself, I encourage her to do so.