I spent the night last week with a bunch of animals … Some monkeys, snakes, elephants … and a rousing bunch of first-graders. We enjoyed an overnight trip to the zoo. My son was literally bouncing off walls waiting for this trip with his class. I, on the other hand, was a little less enthusiastic. I mean, it was going to be great spending time with my son, but sleeping on the floors in sleeping bags and not being able to shower didn’t exactly make me giddy.
Side note: In college I had a glorious time traipsing across London, sleeping in Youth Hostels. I fancied myself adventurous, needing only my backpack and the clothes I was wearing. Fast forward many years, and I’m a little more spoiled, and a little less inclined to find that sort of event a fun “adventure”. But I digress.
So we arrived at the zoo. It was actually a very informative adventure. We had the opportunity to see the food the animals eat and what goes into preparing it, have a fun scavenger hunt in the reptile house, and in the morning have a great behind the scenes tour before the zoo opened. My son spent the majority of the time with his best friend and his friend’s father. At night I didn’t get a ton of sleep, but more than I thought I would, lol.
But I think what was more important in this was the bigger picture. When the time came for parents to volunteer and be included in activities, my son enthusiastically offered me up. When it was late at night, he wanted to cuddle. And when he had a problem, he ran to me. In other words, he knew I was there. And that’s what’s most important. Knowing Mom is there loving him, supporting him, and watching out for him. Regardless of how I felt about it.
Now time for some sleep. Those kids wore me out!