Sam started school yesterday. It's just pre-K. But it's not that pansy kind of pre-K, all singing and playing and snack time. No, this is the real thing. All day, every day at a public school with eighth graders! And there's going to be some hard-core learning at this pre-K, I'm told, a regimented curriculum of letters and numbers animal sounds.
So this is serious stuff, and it's no wonder that I cried when I dropped Sam off. Right? Right?
Also, before you judge me for being a hyper-emotional maniac*, you should know that Sam was also crying, clinging to my leg and running out of the room after me screaming "I want to go to your class, Mom! I want you to stay with me forever."< At that point, I knew that it would only get worse if Sam saw me tearing up, so I had to turn my back and walk away while a classroom aide shuffled him back to the classroom.
The good news is the first day was only a half day, and the parent orientation ("my class") was pretty short. I was back to Sam's classroom within an hour, and found him sitting in a tall cubby, holding his frog blanket. When he saw me, he asked "Mom, can you snuggle me a little bit?" (Cue waterworks.) The aide told me he sat in that cubby the whole time, but he didn't cry. I wish the same were true for me.
The even better news, though, is that I really like this school. And I like his teacher even more. In a district full of failing schools, we lucked in to one in "good standing" with a teacher who is not just "highly qualified," but kind, patient, and down-to-earth. So, I think that if Sam can bring himself to leave his cubby, he'll have a really great year. Me too. I think.
*A fair assessment, considering my track record with public waterworks: the rental car place, the doctor's office, Wal-Mart. Yep, I'm a basketcase.
**I should note that "forever" to Sam means something like "until I think of something else." But, I should also not that apparently he has not yet thought of something else, because just moments ago as he buttoned himself into his school clothes, he came in and told me "Mom, today, I don't want you to do what the teacher says. I want you to stay with me in my class."