Yesterday I knew I had one of the last meetings involving school before school, actually started. I realize now why they start “Back to school” so far in advance. Yesterday during lunch I took off for Josh’s school. Walked through the door, and into what would soon be his class room. His teacher had wanted to meet with us before school started. Something everyone else had agreed would be a good thing. The only thing that wasn’t a good idea, was the fact that I had forgotten the future student.
I walked into his class room, said hello to his teacher. And then stood there for a few awkward seconds before she glanced around as if she were missing something and asked where he was. The classical blank stare “What kid” look I had was probably not the best for a first impression. But it is what it is, and I am pleased to say that it only took me a few moments to recover from. Yes. I forgot the kid at the meeting of the teacher. I knew I was forgetting something. She was nice enough about it, said to stop in today even though it was Saturday and we would start over.
We had a brief talk, and I tried not to tell too much, without leaving too much out of his story. I don’t want them basing their opinions of him off of something I said. But it’s a difficult line to walk, because I don’t want them walking into things with him blindly, and taking all year to get to know him.
This afternoon after work I repeated the same thing as yesterday, only this time, I had the (correct) kid in tow. I tried to prepare him for him, and get him excited, which really is hard to do. It wasn’t until we had pulled into the parking lot, parked, and shut off the truck did he start to react. By shaking his head. Clearly he didn’t want to go.
The whole way to his room I was telling him that it would be ok, that we were just going to meet his teacher, that this is where he would go to school at, reminding him that he loves school (the irony of that is lost on me) and pleaded in my mind that he would be ok.
As soon as his teacher said hello to him, the tears started. He held my hand tighter than usual, much of the whole scenario reminded me of when we first walked into a school. He didn’t want to be there. I told him quietly, again, that it would be ok. And we moved on. Trying to ignore the fact that his face was a deep red, and his shirt was soaked from crying.
His teacher handled things the best was she could have, trying to give him equal parts of space and include him in a few things to make him feel like he should be there. He wanted nothing to do with her. Nothing to do with the room. The desk. The set up. He didn’t want to be there.
He pulled himself together, the best he could, and we made it through the introduction with nothing more than a few tears. I wish I could say the same for me.
I wish I could say I know he will do ok, but the truth is I don’t know. And yes, I am worried. Yes, I have worked with him this summer even though we didn’t put him in summer school. But…
When I got home I read over all the past years of school. I remembered clearly, CLEARLY the day I took him into preschool. The dragging, kicking, screaming, the ear piercing screams. I remembered wondering if he would ever be ok, going somewhere. Ever. Anywhere. And honestly, I cant complain. He has come so, SO far. But…the but that always gets me. Is it enough? Sure – he can go somewhere and hold himself together. But will he learn? How is he going to learn to read? How will we know if he reads? How will he pass the first grade, when there is so much more involved then simply learning the colors and letters and sounds. HOW?
I probably would have let loose in the car but I didn’t want to freak him out. He had done so good. But I worry about him. I know Tuesday will come and go, and we will make it. He will do ok, or he wont, and we will figure it out. But still. I worry about him.