Saturday, September 8, 2012

His First Week


We made it through the first week of school.

"Made it" meaning we survived.

And that's about all we did.

It was rough.  Whoa boy, was it rough.

Backing up to the beginning of the first day of school, however, things were alright.

As I like to do, I threw together a little celebration breakfast, in hopes of helping Drew feel extra special and to get him a little extra excited for his first day.

 {You also get a little preview of the board and batten my dad and I installed on Monday.}

Printables found online.  Somewhere.  I'm sorry I've lost the link!

 French toast, OJ, and bananas.

And let's just say sometime the effort isn't worth the hassle.  In this case, Drew was too anxious about going to school that he didn't appreciate the sentiment.  That, and he's five.  But whatever.  ;)

Anyway, he was kind of sulky and had a negative attitude about the whole school thing.  He's been like this for preschool the last two years, too.  Even though he always has a great time while there, the anticipation of actually going to school trips him up.  He's a bit of a negative Nellie, to say the least, and he had a hard time finding the good in the situation.

I diverted his attention a bit by asking him what he wanted in his lunch box.  He perked up a bit as he chose between peaches or applesauce and pringles or goldfish.  Oh, the decisions a kindergartener must make!  He then got dressed without too much of a hassle, and he kind of cooperated for some photos.  

 Rain on the first day of school doesn't give us the best backdrop for first day of school photos.

And then it was time.

Brad and I escorted him to school, and to his classroom.  I promised to divulge what his special treat was once we got settled into his room (because that's how we do things around here.  Bribe - and hope that it works).


Seriously not impressed once I told him we'd be going to Culver's for dinner as a special first day of school meal.

Seriously nervous and anxious and sad and desperate to be anywhere but where he's at.

Seriously difficult to reason with or to help him feel better.

Seriously tough for this mama to walk away as his tears get bigger and bigger and his cries for mama echo through the classroom door.

Because no matter how much I tried to comfort and explain and tell him why he had to stay at school, he's five.  It doesn't matter to him.  All he cared about was that he didn't want to be at school alone, without his mom.

He just wanted his mom.

And I had to walk away.

Brad and I lingered in the hallway and Drew quieted rather quickly.  Brad peeked back into the room and saw him sitting calmly at his table.

After school, both Drew and his teacher told me that he cried at lunch because he wanted to come home.  He knew that mommy was sad and he had to make sure I was alright.

Sweetest kid ever.

The week was an adjustment for all of us.

My parents were here from Sunday until Thursday, so they were a nice distraction for Reed and myself.  Dad and I kept busy with house stuff, and Mom and Reed were partners in play.  But I thought about Drew all the time.  I hated not knowing what he was doing or if he was ok (although I did know he was) or if he was still scared or sad or lonely.  And obviously, when I picked him up he was fine.  His mood was brighter than when I had dropped him off and his teacher confirmed he'd had a good day.

Wednesday was a better morning.  He was a bit uncooperative at home, but there were absolutely no tears at school.  He was still clinging to me as I left and wasn't all that willing or wanting to stay without me, but he did without any emotional breaks.

And I was feeling much better.

And then Thursday.  And Friday.  More tears.  More struggle.

And it's draining and exhausting.  I've tried to not think about him all day.  But I do.  Believe me, I know he's fine.  I know he's safe and having a good time and that he'll soon come to love it.

I suppose it's just as hard for me to separate from him as it is for him to separate from me.

The two things that Drew has repeated this week that are tough are 
1) it's a long day.  And it is.  Seven hours away from home and his "normal" is a shock to his little system.
2) lunch is the hardest part of his day.  For whatever reason, he misses me the most then.  I need to explore this more, but I'm thinking having lunch with him at school every once in a while might be a good idea.


It's been a long week.  It's been a challenge facing this next step.  For both Drew and me.  And Reed.  He spent all day Thursday (after my parents left) asking when Drew would be home.  {But this morning he told me he wanted to go back to the store (we ran errands on Friday) when Drew was at school again.  Ha!}

Monday we'll start all over again.  We are talking about school a lot and trying to garner a more positive attitude in him and asking him some questions about the tough spots in his day.  I know he'll love school.  He really enjoyed preschool.  Once he meets a new buddy (and I did catch him chatting with a classmate on the playground on Thursday!) and finds something to be excited about, he won't think twice about me. 

I'll learn to be okay with that.

{Tuesday afternoon was beautiful, and provided some much nicer photographs for his first day of Kindergarten.}

And we did make it to Culver's for dinner that first day of school.

And contrary to his earlier pout, he did enjoy it quite a bit.

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