Friday, October 7, 2011

i don't wanna go to school ...

Typically Natalie jumps out of bed enthusiastically and greets us with smiles and hugs and questions of "What did you dream about, mommy?"  or "Did you sleep well, daddy?"

This morning I heard her before I saw her.  When I got to the doorway, I found her still in bed whimpering and saying, "I don't wanna go to school today."

My first thought was, "Crap, she's sick!  I knew this would happen with all the new germs she is exposed to at preschool."

When I asked, "Why?" her reply just about broke my heart.  She said, "Because I will miss you soooo much, mommy!"

I did my best to distract her and remind her of the fun things we had planned for the afternoon.  She thought that was all fine and dandy but she still was NOT going to school. 

I talked to her about the new friends she's made at school.  Again, everything seemed fine on the friend-front.  But she was still NOT going to school.

I told her a funny story from when I was a teacher {about a parent-teacher conference involving oatmeal}, which distracted her enough to get dressed and downstairs for breakfast - only about five minutes behind schedule.

Then I made the mistake of cutting her pancakes into bite-size pieces, as I do every time she eats pancakes, and she completely lost it ... all over the floor.  This can't be happening.  Her little world was ending.  Lost it.  And punctuated that tantrum by screaming, "And I am NOT going to school today."

Delightful.  At this point I did what all good parents in the midst of a dilemma do ... I posted to Facebook, "NHV woke up saying she doesn't want to go to school. Any advice?"  Within minutes {love social media}, I had insights and suggestions from several mommy friends!

Anyway, I don't remember how I solved the breakfast crisis but we got to the point where it was time to leave ... she was dressed, hair was combed, teeth were brushed, ... in my mind, we ARE going to school.

But she dug her heels in one.more.time.

What did I do?  I wanted to lose it.  But somehow I stayed calm.  And I pulled out a photo of myself at preschool.  {My teacher found me on Facebook and sent it to me a few months ago - how awesome is that?}  It's this 8 x 10 black-and-white of me and a few classmates having a tea party with my teacher looking on.  It's darling.  Seriously.

Thankfully, it worked like a charm.  Natalie thought it was funny that her mommy went to preschool, too!  To seal the deal, I told her the story of how I would cry when my mommy dropped me off at preschool (complete with a theatrical reenactment) and then I would cry when she picked me up.  She thought that was so silly.

The next thing I know, we're in the car on our way to SCHOOL ... and she had a great day!


Lee-Ann said...

Oh that is a tough one! I'm glad you found something that worked. I know how my morning would have went and it defintely wouldn't have been good!

TheGrowingCunninghams said...

Love how you handled her. It's so tough to keep still your own emotion in the midst of a "crisis". My kids still present me with that famous line . . . while sitting in car line and of course I fill with anxiety. In the end, they always have fun. And by the way, LOVED the oatmeals reference. Not only do we remember it, but I'm sure a certain parent does, too ;)

Janelle said...

I'm so glad this worked out, but also comforting to know I'm not the only parent that has dealt with it. Great job Mama!

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