Thursday, September 04, 2008

school days

Liv is still going to school. The first full day went well for her. She made a little friend. She played on the playground and learned a couple of french words. She told me she had fun but that a 'big kid' (aka stinkin' bitch....Oops! Was that my outside voice?!) had pushed her off the stairs to the slide. But she seemed unscathed.
This morning, however, was a nightmare. Refusals to get dressed. Statements of hatred regarding school and all its' 'rules'. Anger with my reluctance to let her attend her second day of classes in her nightie.....And then tears. She cried and told me that she didn't like to be away from us for so long. That she prefers to 'learn outside'. That she missed how things were 'before'....and she missed Daddy.

I understand (I feel the same way, dammit!) but I told her that we had to give it a fair try. I said that she may just be feeling a bit nervous with all the new things that are going on and if she'd like, I'll stay with her for a bit.
I thought I was dreading her wanting to go to school. It turns out that having her NOT want to go to school is worse.....WAY worse.
We arrived at school, found her buddy and off she went. Into the depths of her classroom where I am not privy to every exciting, interesting, scary, joyful moment. I feel disconnected. As if something has been amputated. I stood outside her classroom for a bit straining to hear her little voice over the sounds of door slamming, squeals of laughter, teachers calling attention to their pupils. As I walked away, I peered into the room to see her smiling at one her classmates. No signs of terror or trauma. No tears. Just her little grin. I hope she'll be okay. I love her so.


darcie said...

Of course she'll be ok! It's amazing how dramatic our little girls are but once we give them a little guidance in the direction we want/need them to go - they do just fine...better than fine - and most of the time - better than us mommies!
It will get easier Jackie - I promise!
Have a great night -
xoxo - creepy darcie

Lindsay D. said...

Oh wonderful Jackie- Sending kids off to school, I swear, at any age, is crazy frightening. . .

My favorite part of the day is watching my now 2nd grader walk up to our house from the bus stop after school- a mere 100 feet- he's so independent, free, and finally mine, once again. . .

Hang in there! You are amazing! Liv will be great-

Sending lots of healing vibes your way. . .

Creepy Lindsay :)

Kate said...

Change is hard and you have all had a lot of it, lately. I hope the school mornings get easier. It sounds like she's doing well.

Anonymous said...

HI Jackie,

It's hard making these decisions on your own. That's when you must miss Jeff the most -- nobody understands your child the way he did or cares as much.

That said, I believe she will be fine. This is not an irrevocable decision. If it doesn't work, she can leave -- at any time, even in the middle of the year. It's done all the time. One day at a time. And much love and support. Your deep love for your children shines through and this is what will enfold, protect and support them.


IamDerby said...

You might try talking to her teacher, sharing a little about yourself and how you feel and the trauma you have all been through lately. Ask the teacher to give you a little more info on how she is doing each day, it could be by email or phone, just something so you feel a little more comfortable. Most teachers I know (including myself) would be more than happy to do this. Going to school the first time is a huge adjustment for any kid.

PB and Jazz said...


i agree. talk to the teacher and see if she can help you feel more connected. my son had a hard time in kindergarten and i almost pulled him out too. he ended up taking his favorite beanie baby (do you remember those? he is 14 now) to school with him for comfort. the first week he kept it with him, the next week he kept it in his bag, after 3 weeks he was fine. i decided to give it a month and i am glad i did. emotionally he had a hard time bu mentally he really needed it. i think it is especially hard when you have the same feelings as your child. you are doing great, looking at the big picture. 1st grade is really hard and most kids struggle like this (my 3 kids did) for the first couple of weeks. i agree with you, give it a little more time. hugs from the mn

Crash Course Widow said...

Hang in there, Jackie. It's so hard having to be the bad guy when the kids are so upset. But I bet Liv will be fine. You know how kids always are--crying, screaming, distraught at not wanting to go to school, not wanting Mommy to leave them at daycare, etc., and then they're perfectly fine and happy within about 5 minutes.

I found last year when Anna started preschool that those breaks from full-on parenting during the days were so helpful. Calmed me down some and made the days a little bit easier to manage. Even though you're not totally off-duty with Briar still at home, at least you'll be on lighter parenting duty and can get to focus on some special time just with him. Not that it makes the decision about Liv or the time away from her any less shitty...but do your best, girl. It's all you can do.

Hang in there....

Sending hugs and support,

about denise said...

She already made a buddy. That's wonderful. I know you would rather have her at home. I went through the same emotions when we realized I could no longer home-school. It has always been my first choice.

She will be great. How can anyone not love that smile?

leigh in the sav said...

i can only imagine that this is as hard for you as it is for her. maybe harder.

you don't have to give up your hope of who you want your daughter to be simply because you're not able to home school her. she will always be inspired by and learn from you.

you're both going to adjust just fine. and if you don't - then you look at your next best plan. trial and error - sometimes that is the best we can do.

Anonymous said...

Jackie--I am one of the "Creeps" from Matt's blog.

My heart broke when you sent Liv to school; I know it was not your first choice. But you are handling it SO well. I am so impressed with how you handled this recent emotional crisis, and convinced her to give it a fair shake. Sounds like you handled it just as you should have. I am so proud of you!

Kids are amazingly resilient aren't they...? WAY more than we are, sometimes. It is so terrifying for us to send them off where we can't see them every second of every day...but they are just amazing in what they can do.

You are doing an awesome job.


Hawkfeather said...

school- i dunno why I thought school would be so automatic with my kids- but it seemed like a given- they are born- grow.. go to school.. all part of the process..

i found so fast that life isn't on a schedule.

good and bad.
my kids were at a great little waldorf school- but we took some time off..
and are homeschooling- unschooling.

these kids- they are all unique and I am sure she will find her place!

I have missed reasing your blog and hope to be *back* at it again soon.

sending my care- HF