22 March 2010

Will they melt?

I am sitting in my warm, dry house, two of my four children are happily eating lunch at the table 15 feet away, and, I admit, watching Dora.

In about 15 minutes, my two older children will be released from school and into the rain; probably pausing to look out from the school entrance at the downpour over the 1/3 mile walk ahead of them.

Throughout the morning, as the rain has gotten heavier and lighter, I've considered whether or not I should drive to the school to pick up the boys.  I picture them walking home, umbrellas in hand, one pulling his backpack, soaking it as it rolls along...  So, I debate, in my head...  pack up the little ones into the car, find a parking spot, walk to the entrance, find the boys and shuffle everyone back to the car, everyone getting a bit wet in the process.  Or, let the boys trudge home, getting wet, to varying degrees. 

I was feeling guilty as I leaned toward just meeting them at the door, greeting their drippy backpacks and clothes, muddy shoes and glum faces at our door.  Then, I thought back to my own elementary school days.  What would my mother do?

I don't ever remember being picked up from school unless I had an appointment of some kind.  I am sure I got soaked on more than one occasion and I don't even remember it. Did I melt?  No.  Did I catch a cold?  Probably not.  Did I have to change my socks?  Maybe.  Did I dwell on it?  I doubt it.

Do we, as parents, bring more guilt onto ourselves than necessary?  Probably.  I think it is good to have a little guilt wavering around us, to keep us in check, but I also think it is good to know when to push it aside and let the kids walk home in the rain. 

As it turns out, it stopped raining just before dismissal, so all the worry was for naught.

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