Friday, September 10, 2010
What a wonderful change this morning was! Cooper is eager to go to school, and all week we've tried hyping it up for him. Knowing what a dismal playgroup year we had with him last year, I couldn't help but have doubts and lingering worry over how he would actually do starting back up at Catch The Son. However, I loved Teacher Dana for Tommy, and she was able to pull him through his rough times starting out there, so I had hope going into this day. Cooper was ready, even ate a bite of breakfast before heading out with his huge red backpack that he insisted on taking. I think he put in a stuffed dog and his two dubbies, as we reminded him that he can't suck on his dubbies at school. He didn't put up much fuss, actually, so it was really looking good. Throughout the week, Coop would say, "You will stay with me at my school, right?" He wanted that assurance and was thinking of last year when we would stay and play with him the whole time. We told him again and again that he was a big boy, that we would stay a bit to get him settled in, but would need to go "to the office" and just check in on him. That seemed to satisfy him without too much fuss.
I took him that morning while John got Tommy up to his class. I stayed with him, standing in the back, as he jumped right in playing and exploring all the projects he had around him. After about 15 minutes, I gave him a hug and told him that I needed to check with the office for a few minutes. He didn't seem to care much either way, and quickly went off to play again. I stayed out in the hallway, peeking in on him. He was doing so great I eventually sat down in the hall to wait for John's arrival. We hadn't planned on it being this easy, though. When John arrived, I told him how good he was doing and that we probably should just let him play without going in again. Leaving him was a lot easier than I thought, and John's report later that he did great with the whole morning was quite a relief.
What a difference a summer makes! I can't believe how much change it was going from the tears and fuss of playgroup to this now. I can only hope that Coop continues to enjoy his time with Teacher Dana and all the new projects and fun he will have at his school!
In the pictures....Coop is excited about his big red backpack and Tommy is not excited for another day of school!
Monday, September 06, 2010
This year was not met with the same excitement as kindergarten. In fact, Tommy was down right adamant that he was never going to leave home and never going back to school. He was clearly having trouble facing the fact that summer was coming to a close. The Friday before we made the trek up to the school for Open House, and quickly discovered he had been assigned to a totally new, totally different teacher. I had some inkling of the "teacher pile" he'd been put in at the end of the year, but clearly the workings of Principal Heritage had been hard at it shuffling Ms. Hubner's assessments around during the summer break. I was not at all pleased with this unknown teaching assignment, but after visiting Ms. Hubner down in her room for a quick hello, she assured me that she knew about it, that it had happened quickly, that it had been chaos with all the new teachers and that it would be okay. Really? It was a bit of comfort, but small, meager, too little for such a shock.
The walk up to school actually went pretty well, despite Tommy's misgivings about going. The weather was working for us in that it wasn't a beautiful day out for them to feel bad about missing the beach and inner tubing. We walked with the Cousins Pohlman, so that was fun to be with them. There was lots of encouragement for everyone on that walk up the hill. By the time Tommy was lining up outside his classroom, he was beginning to look scared. I could tell he was trying to pay attention, working to keep it together, but then he would look over at me and there was near panic in his eyes. Going into the class was even worse, as he clung to me, and had to have help putting his coat away and getting his stuff in order. He started to cry as he sat in his seat right up from, and nothing I said seemed to help. I had so much snot and tears on my face at one point I had to use my sleeve to get it all off. Finally, I bet down for one last hold and cuddle, loved on him with all I had in me, then peeled his little body off mine and walked away. He was crying as we all left. Thankfully, Georgia had come up with us and was wrangling Coop so we didn't have to worry about him. What a sad, sad morning to leave my sweet boy. It's not the way any mother wants to leave her child. It's so hard to fight the urge to make it all better and take him back home. It's hard not to paint yourself against the door and watch him all day to truly make sure he is okay. Georgia wouldn't be able to text me updates throughout the day about all the wonderful things he was doing. Six hours? Last year his longest day was 3 hours and 15 minutes on the few occasions he stayed for lunch. Six hours not knowing how my boy is?
When we went to pick him up he was all smiles and happy to report that he had liked the day. "It's too long, though," he said, walking home. "Why can't you just come pick me up at lunch?" Once home, it was off to find Johnny and back full steam with play, almost like the day was just a blip in his plan, a minor annoyance for his grand plans of legos, biking and beach. I could only hope tomorrow would be better for him, that it wouldn't be so hard, that there wouldn't be as many tears......