Can I Go Back To First Grade?

I was hired by the school as a substitute for the various aides they have, but it was pending my state clearances, of course. I'm pretty sure the state was determined to dig up something on me that didn't exist because the last clearance came on Monday. It's only been 6 weeks since I requested it. (Insert dramatic eyeroll here.) Turns out, all their digging was for naught, because I'm clean. (Was there ever any doubt? HAVE YOU MET ME?)

So on Tuesday, I personally delivered my special golden paper to the school to let them know that I could officially start work. As I was talking to the secretary, I wondered how long I'd have to wait for a call. In reality, I'd kind of forgotten that I was waiting for that last clearance, and subbing forgotten. Would I wait that long again, and have the phone call requesting my presence be a shock?

It was a shock alright. When the high school principal calls you shortly after school hours, it's most likely not a good thing. My first thought was, "what the heck did the boys do now?!"  (The answer to that is, "plenty, but they haven't been caught yet.") But it had nothing to do with the boys and everything to do with work. I was officially hired all of 4 hours when I was called in. That has to be some kind of record, right?

Wednesday morning I dressed in comfy casual (that's a style) and went to school with the boys. I reported to first grade and spent the day with kids half my size. (Okay, three quarters my size. I can't help that I'm short.) I had reservations, mind you. Subbing could either be So.Much.Fun. or Oh.My.Gosh. Today, thankfully, was the former.

Of all the things that I could talk about from a day at school, two things really stood out today.  The first was a conversation that went like this:

Kid: Do you play football?
Me: No. (But knowing that kids this age ask you what they'd want you to ask them, I did.) Do you play football?
Kid: No. Sometimes at recess but I really don't like it much.

So there's that. Apparently I look like a linebacker. It's probably time to crack down on my diet again and lose those last 20 pounds.

And the other thing that I'm still trying to wrap my brain around is the fact that, in a room filled with 21 first graders, a recurring thought was, "wow, it's so stress-free here." Hello, wake-up call that my life might be a tad busy right now! I'm going to have to work on that. Home should be my quiet place, not a first grade classroom in the middle of a Wednesday afternoon.

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