Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Lot of Tears

It's been a week of school so far and Ingrid is not liking it.  She started with five half days at 3 years old, which she loved.  She would run right to the door, wave good bye and never ever cried.  Ever.  Same thing last year, she'd find a friend on the playground and run to the door when the bell rang, with barely a glance in my direction.  This year, it's been nothing but tears. 

K5 is all day.  She eats lunch and then they have an afternoon session and are let out at 2:30.  This shouldn't be a big deal, I feel like, because when coming home at lunch time, she always seemed bored in the afternoon.  She doesn't nap, she barely rests, she would always be doing something while I laid down with Otis.  So why not do this at school?  Where you get to have fun and do art and gym?  I don't know, something about it rubs her the wrong way.

So we have tears. 

Ingrid is also riding the bus home most days, as Otis is napping and I don't want to wake him up and drag him to school.  The first day she was SO EXCITED about it.  Then it became a little scary, and now it's full blown anxiety about riding the bus home, wake Otis up, come get me, I'm scared, I don't know anyone on the bus, I'll get lost, it's too hard.  No matter how I tried to spin it, she wasn't having it.  Ugh.

Yesterday from the time she got off the bus to the time she went to bed, she cried.  She worried about school, staying all day, missing me, taking the bus home.  Every time she'd calm down, suddenly she'd think of something else to worry about.  It breaks my heart.  I don't know how to help her!  I feel so helpless, I just tried to tell her she's strong, she can do this, it will get easier.  I tried to have her imagine happy things and focus on the good things about school, like her friends and getting chocolate milk for lunch.  I got another mom to bring her home instead of taking the bus.  Nothing seems to make her feel better.  So then I get sick of hearing the same thing over and over and I lose my patience like a bitchy mom and just say forget about it!  You don't have a choice, you are GOING to school!  And then she cries harder. 

Why on earth is she so upset this year??  When she is home, she's sassy and bored and complaining about everything, so I don't really know why she wants to stay home.  It's not like she's having any fun here...I end up yelling at her all the time.  Blah!  I wish I could say never mind, we'll homeschool, like I did when she was 3, but I don't want to have her home.  She's in a great school that has a huge wait list, we are so lucky to be at this school!  And I don't want to be a teacher.  I don't want to homeschool.  I don't even want to unschool, this summer SUCKED, she was so crazy and I felt like physically and emotionally drained at the end of each day. 

Send us some good vibes that school will cease to be a thing she stresses about!  I'm not sure how much more I can take. 


maryanne @ mama smiles said...

I'm sorry! Does her teacher have any advice? How about the bus driver? Emma had some anxiety about school and the bus, but our school helped us work through it with her.

Fiona said...

Oh no Amber - that sounds like hard work for ALL of you.
Poor you and poor Ingrid.

It sounds like she does like school, but is just totally overwhelmed by everything coming at once. Making that transition back after a long Summer can be difficult.

If it were me I would be tempted to try and pick her up for a few weeks until she settles. I appreciate this is hard with a napping toddler, but maybe it would be worth it in the short term to avoid an entire afternoon of crying? It sounds like the bus ride home might just be the final straw for a tired and overwhelmed kid.

And focus heavily on the positives. Get a large jar and a bunch of marbles, and every day when she gets in, sit up with her, feed her (my kids are always hungry after school) and talk about her day. Ask her to tell you all the good things that happened, and for each good thing she lists she can put a marble in the big jar. Try and gloss over anything negative.

Then once the jar is full, or the marbles reach a certain level, she gets to do something fun, choose a prize, etc.

Sometimes making them think about the positives can really help switch their attitude around, and a visual reminder (like the marble jar) helps a lot.

Good luck. I hope it gets better soon for all of you.

Big brother, Little sister. said...

Oh Amber it's such a big jump for them in time, energy and emotion.
I too would pick her up until she settles xx

Amber Liddle said...

Yep, we have had a friend pick her up, and Otis didn't nap so I could go. She seems better today, she keeps asking if I'm sure she can make it through one more day. I have bribed her with going to a movie on Saturday, so every time she feels sad, she can just think of Saturday, the movie, popcorn. Lol! Hope that works.

Mommy, Papa and the 'Nuts said...

I agree with your friends up there. I pick the kids up from school and Sofia just falls asleep in the car. Thats the nap. It sucks for me kinda, but at least the kids aren't stressed out.