After school special

Here’s one of those things they neglect to tell you when you take your baby home from the hospital: remember when you graduated high school and college and thought, woo hoo, no more homework? APRIL FOOLS!

They should totally yell that while high-fiving other nurses to emphasize what a complete idiot you are. Thinking you can have babies without complex division and book reports. Who do you think you are? British aristocracy?

What to Expect The Seventh Year and Every Year Until They Graduate High School: A Shit Ton of Homework and Uncontrollable Sobbing.

I think I may have joked about this on twitter last year when in the throes of a terrible night of second grade homework, something like, hey dude in college who refuses to wear a condom: get ready to live another twelve years of reading comprehension. DECONSTRUCT THIS CHARACTER, MOTHERFUCKER.

Third grade homework is another beast entirely, and I’m sure you’re going to tell me it gets so much worse from here. Is there a PSA for parents of elementary school kids, one that tells the truth? Like, yeah, we are not alone. We are all sitting at the dining room table every night checking and double checking our children’s addition and subtraction while they write and erase and write and erase, frustrated tears dripping onto the paper. But shit goes straight downhill from here. It does not get better. Trust the ones who made it to the other side: find and book a medically-induced coma.

Leta is working on a book report that is due this week, a heavily involved book report using a book that I have never read or heard of. So when she tells me, “But I don’t understand the ending!” I cannot fix it for her. I have to tell her to reread the chapters leading up to the ending and then brace for the heavy exhale that will shake the floor and rattle the windows. Have you ever heard of anything as unfair as having to reread a few chapters of a book? I HAVE. Because when I was eight and tasked with summarizing a newspaper article in my own words, I locked myself in my room and told my mother that she could not comprehend my pain.

I really hope my mom stood outside my room, picked a booger and wiped it on my door.

I think about all the projects I put my mother through: a working paper-mache volcano, a miniature Parthenon built out of wood from scratch, four consecutive years of public speaking contests, a diorama with homemade figures of each character in Little Women. And oh my god, the crying.

Mom. You totally get all the Celestial Kingdoms. You win. In the hereafter you get to lounge on a beach and watch video footage of me in the Telestial Kingdom attempting to glue a pipe cleaner into a wad of clay while a loop of my dramatic, irritating sobs serenades me for eternity. You’ll have a mute button, of course.