Thursday, December 16, 2010

A No-Win Situation.

Inara still has good days and bad days when it comes to school. Most days she is fine once she GETS to school, but for the hour beforehand - that frazzled hour when I'm trying to get lunch into her while untangling her hair and also willing Nissa to not poop with the sheer force of my mind so that we're not late again....well, that time is pure hell. I'm not gonna lie. It's not pretty.

Most days, our conversations start out like this:
"Inara, are you looking forward to school today? I think you're going to have a lot of fun doing XYZ activity or playing with XYZ friend!"

To which I inevitably get this reply:
"Yeah. I guess. Will Sadie (her cute and sweet and adorable friend) be there? Because that's the only person I really want to see. And also? I think I'm starting to feel nervous. I think I really AM nervous, Mama...because....I'm going to MISS you. Oh, Mama! I just don't want to be away from you!!!!!!"

Followed by mass hysteria. Followed by me picking up the pieces of my broken heart off the floor and putting them back together as I shove everyone out the door. Followed by more moaning and groaning and consoling in the car, on the way, walking into school, taking off coats and the worst worst WORST part - when I have to look at her big, huge, watery eyes as I walk away from her. I hates it, I do.

Meanwhile, Nissa is blowing a nut because she has either pooped or because she wants to stay at school forever and ever and how DARE I take her away from all the bright shiny things! Mean Mommy.

I think things are getting better though. It used to be that Inara would feel sad after I had left - but lately she goes through all her sadness before we even get to school and then when I've left she is apparently as happy as a clam. That is basically the only thing that is preventing me from homeschooling - the knowledge that for us, even being upset for the hour before school starts is better than how things were a month ago. But it does nothing to ease the tension at home, because every day it's the same old song and dance - Inara getting upset and me comforting her, telling her that it's going to be okay, that it's normal to feel nervous and scared, that I will be back to get her SOON. I don't know why she does it to herself, and I don't know why she keeps doing it....I guess it really does feel scary to her, even though she's FINE as soon as I leave. She even comes home and regales me with tales of her escapades in class, so I know she's having fun.

Sometimes I feel like the only person she's really upset me.

Truthfully, I'm really looking forward to winter break. I'm looking forward to not fighting about school, to just being happy spending the whole day together, and having a little bit of peace. I've actually been really bad about her schedule lately and have let her stay home from school once a week just so that I don't have to deal with her anxiety. Bad, bad, Mama, I know. But it's just year will be better. Right?

So get this. Today, her class was going on a field trip - swimming. Normally what happens on Thursdays is that I drop Inara off at school, rush back to get Nissa to take a nap, and then wake Nissa up an hour and a half later, and rush to pick Inara up from school. But today, Yousuf is giving finals and he needed the car during the time Inara would have been at school. Well, in my infinite wisdom (ha ha HA), I told Inara's teacher that she wouldn't be attending the field trip, so that Yousuf could have the car, and also because if Inara was going swimming I really wanted to be there with her. Her teacher said it was absolutely no problem, that she also preferred a parent attend the swimming field trip with each child (for safety), and if that wasn't going to be possible, then we could just take a day off and have fun at home.

Well, yesterday Inara found out WHY she wasn't going to school today. And you'd think that given everything she's been feeling about school lately, that she'd be happy for the break. Well, that kind of thinking would involve logic, which DOES NOT APPLY TO THIS CHILD.

This is what she is saying, in the other room - to nobody in particular, mind you - right now:
"I really really wanted to go to school today. I really love school. But my Mama said that I couldn't go. And all I wanted was to go to school to go swimming with Sadie. But my Mama said that she has to go with me. But I don't NEED HER to go. I'm big. I can go by MYSELF. With Sadie. Why can't I JUST. GO. TO. SCHOOL????"

Sometimes, a Mama just can't win.
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