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16 Times the First Day of School Went Terribly, Horribly Wrong

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My first day of 7th grade was the stuff of graphic novel nightmares. New to middle school and the public school system as a whole, I strutted down the locker-lined hallways decked out in the stuff of neon tweenage dreams. Determined to make everyone notice, I took it slow and smiled. People stopped and whispered. Who’s that girl? Is she new? Do you know her? Just when it seemed like I nailed my public school debut, a classroom door flung open and nailed my face. BOOM. Blood. Confusion. Concussion? I wanted to cry. I wanted my mommy. But more than any want, I needed first-aid. Welcome to middle school.

As alone and awkward as I felt that day, first day of school horror stories happen to the best of us. Take a cringe:

“Which do you want to know about? The year my daughter started Kindergarten and I wrote the wrong date on my calendar so she didn’t show up until the following week, or the year my son got suspended for three days the first day of middle school for fighting?” Karen, mom of 2

“I got my period the first day of 6th grade and didn’t know. A boy told me I had blood on my butt and everybody saw.” — Jennifer, mom of 1

“We’d just moved to our city a few weeks before school started. My husband was the one to register my son and pick up all the school information. The first day of school I thought I knew where the school was, but I was wrong. We actually got lost (this was before navigation). By the time I found my way home and figured out where the school was, he’d missed most of the morning.” — Vicki, mom of 2

“I got into a screaming match with my son’s football coach on the first day of school. The principal threatened to call the cops.” Will, dad of 3

“I had a kid throw up in my classroom on the first day. It smelled so bad, another kid threw up and we had to go to the library until it could get cleaned up.” — Kim, mom of 3

“My wife bought my daughters matching backpacks because she thought they were cute, or they were on sale — I don’t know. Anyway, I dropped the girls off at their different schools and found out later they’d taken each other’s backpacks, complete with different lunches, wrong school supplies, etc. That night I went out and bought a different backpack.” — Jeff, dad of 2

“When I was in 4th grade, we were supposed to bring all the signed school paperwork back on the first day of school. My mom had forgotten to sign a few papers so I tried to forge her signature so she wouldn’t get in trouble. I guess it was pretty obvious because the school called my mom.” — Heather, mom of 4

“The first day of 7th grade I thought I was so cool starting junior high. The boy I liked was in my homeroom and right before the bell rang, my mom ran through the door to give me my lunch. She kissed me and shouted, ‘Good luck, honey!’ before running out the door. I died. Thinking about it now, I’m still horrified.” — Ashley, mom of 3

“My dad literally videotaped me walking to class on my first day of high school. I was so pissed. Everyone was staring. We laugh about it now.” — Emily, pregnant with her first child

“I got into a pretty bad car wreck on way to school the first day of my senior year and ended up in the hospital for a week.” — Dave, dad of 2

“My daughter told her Kindergarten teacher that she heard she wasn’t a good teacher and that all the moms said so.” — Linda, mom of 3

“I’m a 3rd grade teacher and I wasn’t feeling well, but didn’t want to miss the first day of school. As I was explaining the classroom rules I started feeling really dizzy and actually fainted. The kids started screaming and crying. As it turned out, I was pregnant and didn’t know it yet. That was a wild start to the school year!” — Sarah, mom of 2

“A couple of years ago, one mom accused another mom of sleeping with her husband. They started shouting profanities and getting physical right there in the parking lot! It was the talk of the school for the longest time. If that were me, I would have transferred schools.” — Leslie, mom of 1

“I ate lunch in a bathroom stall my first week of high school. I was terrified.” — Shayna, mom of 3

“I walked in really late to all my classes the first day of middle school because I couldn’t read the school map. The custodian had to show me where my last class was.” — Andrea, mom of 2

“I moved schools and my new 5th grade teacher pronounced my name wrong. I was too embarrassed to correct her so I spent the whole year basically being called the wrong name. It wouldn’t have been so bad if the other kids didn’t say my name the same way.” — Hiu, dad of 4

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