It’s a pretty neat system. If your child is marked absent, the robocall program will call you to make sure you’re aware of the absence. It will, in fact, keep on calling you, over and over again, all day long if necessary, until you acknowledge that you have received the message.
So, yeah, good system.
Except on that particular day, E. was at school.
I’d taken him there.
I’d given him a goodbye kiss and watched him walk through the doors, just like I do every morning.
When I got the robocall telling me my child had been marked absent at morning roll call, I hung up immediately and called the school.
And while I waited FOUR BILLION YEARS on hold (real elapsed time: probably less than a minute and a half) while the secretary called down to E.’s classroom to find out what was going on, I had this thought:
Hey, this is exactly the kind of situation where the psychiatrist said I should work on not jumping to the worst-case scenario.
And then, almost immediately afterwards, my brain went FUCK IT, and I went into a complete panic of the “What if E. accidentally came back out the doors before school started and got lost and kidnapped” variety.
The secretary came back on the line, apologetic. He was, indeed, in his classroom. The substitute teacher had made a mistake with the attendance and hadn’t fixed it in time to stop the computer from calling me.
He was perfectly safe and exactly where he should be.
But I can see it’s going to take a lot of work to change my patterns of thought.
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