Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Miss Amy, do you have kids?

"The most effective form of birth control I know is spending the day with my kids." -Jill Bensley

More than once someone's asked if I have kids. In fact, one 3rd grader has called me Mommy, which prompted another to ask if I really was his mom. Same with when a kid gave me a hug. ummm, nope. Some students have asked me multiple times--I guess they forgot. Or didn't realize that there are several steps needed for that status to change, and they would definitely notice if I were to get pregnant. (Kids are way more perceptive than I give them credit for. They may not remember their math, but they often notice small details/changes relating to appearance).

It seems as if kids don't have a great concept of age. Sure, some of them have young parents, so it doesn't seem that far off for me to have kids (even though to me, it is so far off). Not many kids, unless they've already asked me, would probably guess correctly how old I am. I was chatting with some 5th graders after school one time and they went through the kids, married, boyfriend questions, and upon telling them I don't have a boyfriend, one goes "M* is single!" So I say, "dude, I'm 10 years older than you." and M goes "nuh-uh!" And so I ask, "how old are you?" 
"right, so 10 years older." 
"So how old are you?" 
"Um, you can do the math." The older kids have a better concept that I'm closer to their age than to most of the classroom teachers. 

There's this one kindergardener who has red hair, a lot like mine. I've been asked both by students and a couple of faculty if we're related. But nope, kids are a long ways down the road for me. (I'm thinking I need a husband first, although when one 3rd grader came to my defense about not having kids--the follow up to me answering no is often "why not?"--she was like, "well Miss Amy's not married!" and the girl who asked responded that you don't have to be married to have kids. Which is a valid point, and likely more common in the population I work with. Or it's just a trend that's occurring more than it did in the past and is more accepted).

Of course, then there's the question of whether this job makes me want to have kids or never have kids. It's a toss up really. Today I spent the end of my day with a kid who'd been super super naughty all day and had to stay in from recess. He spent the first 10 minutes just bawling, and screaming some. And I'm really not sure he learned from this experience, but we'll find out tomorrow.

Okay, it's not actually a toss up, I know I want kids some day, and they will be way better behaved than some of these little monsters. Shoot, I still love the troublemakers. Who am I kidding? 

*It's probably best that I not use real names. So I'll just go with an initial. Maybe I'll make up names if there's a kid I talk about a lot. We'll see.

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