Tears

This is another post that wasn't what I was going to originally post about.  But here I am at 10:02 am and I'm still second guessing, and tearing up, and wondering if I'm doing the right thing.
Caitlin cries.  Every day we have school.  That is every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  Beginning August 26th.  We have had a few tear free mornings, but I think the number of tear free mornings is actually 3.  Just 3. 
I have tried to be tough.  I've tried to be strong.  Today, it broke me.  Today, the tears introduced a crying jag that began as we turned into the lot.  The jag, turned into lots of "NO"s and "I'm not going" as I tried to get her out of the car.  Trying to get an uncooperative preschooler out of a 3-point harness booster seat with a 1 year old on your hip is really an act reserved for the circus... The jag, turned into wails, as I of course was becoming overwhelmed and frustrated.  I broke into a sweat as I felt the eyes of the other parents watching.  Waiting for my next move.  Will she scream?  Will she spank?  Will she give in?
Yes, I dragged my precious girl into school today.  Yes, I kissed her and told her I loved her, and I promised I'd be back soon... And yes, the delightful and kind, Ms. Teacher pulled and pried a kicking and crying Caitlin off my body.  She begged me to stay.  She begged me to take her with me.  She begged me for things I'm not even sure she knew she was begging for.  And I broke.  I had to pick up Mac, and stand at the end of the hall, listening to screams and pleas, as I let a few tears fall.
How do I know if I'm doing this right?  Was I wrong to tell her that her behavior was out of control?  Was it selfish that I was embarrassed? 
I know I can't give in.  If I do, she will just eat it up, and we will never go to school again.  Giving in isn't an option.  I'm sad because I loved school, and Caitlin tells me she doesn't like it.  How do I convey that school is a privilege?  That school and learning is awesome.  I can't bring myself to tell her that this school gig isn't a one year deal... Preschool is just the beginning. 
So as my other blog-goddess/BF would say, I'm bringing it to the blog.  I'm asking for help.  Help me, please.  Any kind words or suggestions will do.  Say a prayer, send courage vibes, light a candle.  I'm sure many of you have dealt with this or are dealing with this.  How did you do it?  How are you doing it? 
Today I broke.  After weeks of being strong.  I'm ok with that.  As I tell Caitlin, when I pick her up, after those tear filled mornings,
"Tomorrow is another day.  We can try again tomorrow."
Happy Blogging,
Megan

3 comments:

  1. Have you tried asking her what, specifically, she doesn't like about school? Maybe it's just because she misses you (which you can't do much about, but at least you could assure her that you miss her too and remind her that you will spend time together when she gets home), but maybe there is something else. It really could just be a matter of you listening to what she doesn't like and trying to turn it around on her into a positive (Obviously I'm advocating for lying to children here). Or maybe she feels jealous that her sister doesn't have to go and spend time away from mommy. I agree that you can't give in on this one, but if you can get her to talk about what she doesn't like, maybe you can also get her to admit that there are things she does like too, and play those up. I also figure she's probably fine when you pick her up... not like she spends the whole day crying. So maybe when you pick her up ask her what she did today and say "oh that sounds like fun", then the next day when you are getting ready to drop her off remind her of that, "remember when you did x yesterday, you said that was fun!". Or talk to the teacher the day before and find out what they are planning to do and tell her about it on the way to school "Ms. Teacher said you will be finger-painting today. You love finger-painting!". Give her something to look forward to. I've not road-tested any of these ideas, but I hope something works for you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Megan! This story is beautiful. You are so vulnerable and I'm sure this is so tough to deal with three days a week. I too was a school-lover so I would not know what to say in this situation. However, the son of one of my best friends went through something like this and it took him a good year to get over it. I know that seems like a long time, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Now that same boy LOVE Sunday school and preschool and doesn't even blink when his parents drop him off.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh thank you for sharing this with me. its hard, but I'm glad I'm not alone. Leila has been doing better. with the screaming subsiding to tears alone, but still hard.

    ReplyDelete