Wednesday, September 24, 2008

"School" of Thought

I had a quick meeting scheduled yesterday at 3:05 with Sienna's teacher to talk about the tasks I needed to help with on Thursday afternoons when I volunteer in Sienna's class. So what that meant is that I would wait until Sienna rode her bike home and then we would just cross the street together and head over to Mrs. Banna's class.

But, Sienna didn't know we had this meeting scheduled. And she obviously didn't want to go so she tried pulling her retaliating, stubborn, "I'm not going and you can't make me" routine. After trying to negotiate, I did the 1-2-3 and then picked her up and carried her across the street. I put her down, she froze in place. Sarah, obediently walked along with me, we would both take a couple of steps, look behind us and then do the whole negotiate-1-2-3-pick-up to cross the school drop off drive way. I think I had to do the routine one more time before we were on the sidewalk safe haven. 

There were about 20 random kids and adults lingering around the front doors. All eyes were on us. I felt so judged and ridiculous. I was so angry at Sienna. Frankly, if it wasn't Sienna throwing a fit though, it probably would have been Sarah. It is just a little less publicly humiliating carrying a two year old than an almost seven year old. As we approached the front doors, the aid who normally holds the doors open for the kids both before and after school stood there whispering to another aid who has made inappropriate comments, although possibly misunderstood I have now come to realize. I saw them in one another's ears and more rage filled in me although all I could do was squat to keep Sarah's attention focused on just walking in the doors. She is so distracted by so much. It is a full time job getting eye leveled and helping her to move forward, both in day to day activities and development issues. 

I am hoping that Sienna is following us not caring if she stews or not. "Please do not make a scene today please do not make a scene today," the thoughts were telling one another in my mind not realizing that we already had put on the public show and entertainment just a few minutes earlier. Must have been in denial.

Then, one of the aids leans towards me to say something that soothed my soul better than chocolate on a rainy day. It was as if I were entering into the pearly gates and John, Peter, Paul or Gabriel or whoever that guy is who is apparently standing at the gates of heaven leans over to me and says, "We feel so sorry for you. We don't know how you do it!"

WHAT? I thought those aids were the biggest judges of all of the school personnel towards me! They are the reason I detest going to that school. They represent the entire school to me, the same 'school' who doesn't see anything wrong with my child and who claim it is all poor parenting. These words were like music engraved on my heart. I think I might have even flinched and said something like, "Seriously? I thought... well, I didn't think you liked me." Lame, I know. 

And, a tear welled up in my eye. I wanted to hug them and take refuge in that moment. I pulled it together as soon as I saw the vice principal. I didn't want him to see me teary eyed. I had to look like I was in control, somewhat professional.

It was a blessing. Encouragement. It was exactly what I needed, just some support and understanding. I wish I had more encounters like that to report!


Anonymous said...

Sometimes we can take body language to mean something way different than what it is. I "assume" the worse alot and as they say, ass-u-me.

Elizabeth Channel said...

You will have more encounters like that I'm sure. As people begin to know who you truly are, they will reach out to you. Remember, you are new in a new take time..sometimes too much time...

Jenni said...

I think a lot of people feel judged when they come to school and I wish they didn't! Most of us are mothers and are pretty empathetic people by nature.

Anonymous said...

All of the words tear my heart apart. I am sending this your way today.

I know I am a little late getting around this week. It has been a tough one.

You hang in there. There are people that love you in hidden places.

Anonymous said...

Well, it did not go through on the post. I will send this to you via email right now.