Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Don't Go Breaking My Heart, or Tears of a Clown?

10:36am - our new kitchen: So far the good news is that only two of us have cried (Blake, and Granny Karla, in that order). Blake wandered into our room around 6:00 and after lying quietly for a few minutes in the bed, he said with an excited lilt in his voice: "Is today the day I go to school?" Finally, we could reply that yes, it was! In a somewhat dozy state, I thought to myself, oh, this is a good sign. It could have been 2 minutes later, or it could have been 10, but sometime soon after, Blake started crying and then came the line which every parent really doesn't want to hear: "I don't want to go to school!". The rest of the morning was a bit of a rollercoaster - he went down for breakfast but immediately told Granny he didn't want to go (that's what caused her to get teary). He then seemed fine but when I brought down his uniform, back came the tears and the refusal to get dressed. I am going to give myself some credit here and say that I am getting very good at being sensitive and gently encouraging in these situations (how it helped that I didn't have to get ready for work, today). He then put his uniform on with excitement, while Noah decided he wanted to wear a pair of school trousers too. Blake looked super handsome and posed for some nice photos, but then a few minutes later, the tears were back - and not just a few..it was like a dam had burst! Oh dear...I had elaborate plans for a photo shoot outside the house but in the end it was all we could do to just get out the door really. We met up with Charlie on the corner which brightened Blake's mood quite significantly (though they're not in the same class, which is bumming Blake out a bit) and made the walk in the morning sun. I felt it was a good sign that the sun was shining, though I'm sure we have plenty of days ahead of doing that walk in the pouring rain!

The school looked really lovely as we went in. It's an old orphanage that's been converted into the school, and there'd been rumors about how ready it actually was in terms of the building work and renovations. In the classroom, things looked good, but then when we went outside, the playground is really still a building site at the moment, so that may take a good few more weeks or months to get finished. We were there for about 15 minutes or so seeing all that was in the classroom, and then it was time for the parents to head off. At this point Blake started whimpering and then he was really crying and saying "Mama, mama!" (he never calls me that!), as Matt and I tried to figure out what to do. All the kids were getting settled on a carpet and so I took him away from the main action and tried to tell him it was going to be ok. He's going to be so fine, but I guess he just wanted to express his uncertainty at the new setting. His teacher came and held his hand and led him to the group, and I took my cue and headed out. I am not sure he's feeling 100% which would perhaps play a role, but I hope that when we pick him up later that he's had a good time.

An hour or so later, and I was sitting at our table humming, "Don't go breaking my heart..." because I guess it's one of those times where I am feeling a pang of heartbreak...seeing my little baby be so grown-up and head off into the unknown, but not without a reminder that he will miss me and that he's still not that big. I hope that when we pick him up this afternoon he's back to his usual cheery self and I can say that his first day tears were the tears of a clown.

9:45pm - I'm exhausted! Blake was so much cheerier when we met him at the end of the day, so Matt and I heaved a huge sigh of relief. I'm not sure we're out of the woods yet because it may be we get some rough mornings as everyone figures out the new routine, new faces and places. He did say he had a good time (best quote of the day was from his classmate Jemima as we were walking home: "I didn't learn *anything*!"). Too cute. Off to bed now...just trying to get all the photos into this album has put me through the wringer - so emotionally draining!

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2012-09-19

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