Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Tantrum, The Thinker and Clothes

Yesterday all the kindergarten stress came to a head. I thought it would be lovely if we all walked Q to school. And it was lovely. Noodle was in the stroller, we looked at the excavator digging up the water main, we held hands crossing the street.

But then when it was time to leave his backpack and go play, Q didn't want to. And he didn't want to stand with his friends who were standing near the backpacks. When I tried to detach and leave, he clung to my side. I didn't think it was really a problem until we got serious about leaving and he started to wail about staying with me. J took Noodle and walked away and I kept trying to walk away, reassuring him, 'Today after school, we'll go get your library card and we'll make scones.' He was not interested, he wanted to stay with me. I explained that I was going to work. He needed to go to school. I would see him in a few hours. Finally managed (luckily a kindergarten aide was there) to peel him off of me and walk away. He was crying/screaming so loud I could hear him ALL THE WAY HOME. A disadvantage of living close to the school.

They called about 5 minutes later. They'd gotten him into the building, and had taken him to someone's office (the counselor?) and were trying to calm him down with no luck. They asked me what our afternoon plans were so they could reiterate them with him, tried to put me on speaker phone, he covered his ears rather than listen, finally they told me they'd let me know how they made out and we hung up. I guess they managed to get him calmed down and the principal talked to him about the touch a truck event and then walked him to class. They gave me a call to tell me he seemed to be reintegratng just fine...

When I asked later what was up with that, he responded in a fragile voice that he wanted to be with me. I nicely let him know that sometimes I need to be at work and he needs to go to school and that we'll always come back together later. And then I doted on him for ages, taking him to get his library card, and a key chain to hang it on (he'd spotted it earlier at lunch with J who took refuge downtown because we had no water from 9 to 1), cookies and cash and then walked back up the hill. That seemed to be enough because then he went off to play happily by himself rather than helping me with scones (which I think he would've done if he was still feeling fragile).

It's good that he acts out once in a while so that I know he can, but wow.

Other recent stories:

Recently the kids have been allowed to play in the cars, pretending to drive, turning all the buttons and switches and creating havoc. Our motivation is to keep the kids outside where we can watch them, without having to constantly chase them, so that we (and by we, I mostly mean J) can work on painting the house.

After a few of these play sessions, I realized that they were trading jobs. One would be the Driver and the other would be the 'Thinker'. The Thinker is the person sitting in the front passenger seat - perhaps a version of Navigator?

Pulling away from the house with Noodle this morning, she softly says, "Daddy not in Thinker seat."

This morning Noodle was a riot of colors. She wanted to wear her Elmo shirt - a bright red shirt with a pencil drawing of Elmo from Sesame Street. I opened the shorts drawer to grab a pair of jeans and she spots her 'cousin's pants' - bright orange shorts. It was a little cool, so she selected a lavender sweatshirt with a lobster on it and pairs it with her rain boots, which are dark blue with pink ducks. And a brilliant yellow hat. I managed not to giggle hysterically.

But the boots are causing some problems. As I'm shutting the fridge door, she makes an unexpected rush for her sippy cup, trips and bangs her head. When I suggest that her rain boots are tripping her, she is outraged. "No! They're perfect!"

She did, however, concede that they were on the wrong feet.

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