My Worst Nightmare About School Drop-Off

A while back my fellow Stir writer Jeanne wrote a post about why she prefers the bus to school drop-off. Now, sometimes based on comments left at this site, I get the feeling that folks don't necessarily understand that we bloggers don't always share the same opinions on a given subject, so let me be perfectly clear: I disagree with Jeanne on every single point she makes. I may just have to knife-fight her in the parking lot on this one, that's how wrong she is.

See, I switched from putting my kid on the bus to driving him to school in the mornings for the exact opposite reasons she lists: driving means we can sleep in a little, I don't have to waste time at the bus stop in the pouring rain, and best of all, I can wear whatever I want because I don't have to interact with other people.

That last benefit, though, is why I have a recurring sense of dread about morning drop-off. In my worst dreams, a horrific scenario is unfolding: I have to GET OUT OF MY CAR.


I hate to be a stay-home mom cliché, but the fact is I dress like a slob first thing in the morning. When I was waiting at the bus stop, I wasn't the most stylish person standing on a busy street on a cold wet morning, but I was at least up to par with my fellow Oregonians: fitted fleece, decent jeans, Columbia jacket with the handy little drawstrings on the hood.

Now that I'm driving my second-grader to school, though, I make sure I'm presentable ... but only from the waist up. My hair is brushed, my ever-deepening under-eye bags are properly spackled with concealer, my t-shirt is free of visible stains -- and my lower half is clad in an ancient pair of capri yoga pants. My footwear of choice? Flappy rubber Crocs flip-fops.

Every weekday morning I'm getting into a relatively warm car, driving a couple miles round trip, and settling back into a morning of working in front of the computer, so I figure what's the point of putting on something more visually appealing but less comfortable? Dropping my son off is as easy as getting in a line of cars and stopping briefly at the front of the school so he can hop out of the backseat -- do I really need PANTS for that?

Of course, the fact that I typically look like someone whose morning ablutions were interrupted by a power outage means that my time is coming. I'll get a flat tire, or my son will forget his backpack and I'll have to run it into the school, or someone in the always-dicey line of cars will rear-end me, or SOMETHING. And there I'll be, exposed to everyone. Shivering in my ratty too-thin pants that always have a tuft of cat hair stuck to them somewhere, slipping around in my flip-flops, cursing my laziness and stubborn refusal to put on something with an actual waistband.

I'm sure I'll learn my lesson eventually, and as a result I'll take the time to get dressed like a civilized adult. Until then, though, it's business up top ... and party on the bottom. (Whereas "party" = "potentially humiliating," of course.)

What do you wear when you go through the school drop-off line, assuming you're not heading straight to an office afterward?

Image via Linda Sharps

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