Thursday, September 13, 2007

Happy New Year. Now Come Collect Your Squalling Child

My baby started preschool today. No, I’m not being melodramatic, the baby started preschool today. The one on the right:
She did well, by all accounts. She had a short nap and ate a good lunch and when I took her back into the room after class, she kicked her legs excitedly and giggled. Enrichment can’t start too early, you know.

Um, right. Lest you have forgotten, she is in preschool only because it’s a cooperative preschool and in order for Bump to be able to co-op in Lumpyhead’s class, Lula needs to be in school one day a week, too.

Oh yeah, someone else started preschool today.

It was a mild disaster.

Originally, Bump and I were going to drop off both kids, and he was going to show me around and fill me in on what I needed to know. For starters, how to get to the preschool.

Instead, the woman who was scheduled to co-op in Lula’s class couldn’t make it, so Bump had co-oping duties this morning. He had to arrive early, leaving me to drop off both kids with nary a clue about procedure or who the children’s teachers were or where to park the damn car.

Luckily, Pete was available to show me the ropes, or I might still be driving around Arlington with only a vague idea of where the school is located.

After a painless dropoff – Lumpyhead ran into the classroom without so much as a goodbye wave, there were toys in there, you know – I chatted with other parents over coffee and donuts. I got periodic reports about how he was doing (screaming, for the most part, but so was everyone else). When he had settled down (“He and Liam are playing with the dollhouse”), Pete and I hightailed it out of there to hang out at a coffee bar.

After a lovely couple of hours, we returned to the school. We tried to take some photos of ourselves with my camera and otherwise killed time until it was time to collect the children.

Upon entering the building, we saw another mother who had been instructed to send me to Lumpyhead’s class the moment I arrived. (Good thing we dicked around so much before coming in. Ugh.) Lumpyhead was wailing, and apparently had been doing so all morning. He was dismissed early and I tried to calm him down.

He asked for Thomas. He wanted to go home. He was a hot, teary, sweaty mess.

I managed to chat with his teacher about strategies for Monday. We’ll be practicing goodbyes all weekend, as well as looking at pictures of his teacher and him in the classroom.

I had planned to go in to work after dropoff, but when Bump had to co-op I decided to go in after pickup. After all the clingy weeping, I decided not to go in at all.

So, I’m taking the day off. For Rosh Hashanah or something. I did spend most of the day with my favorite Jew, so that’s gotta count for something.


Em said...

I'm sorry Lumpyhead had a rough first day but I am sure that it will get easier. On the bright side, having started Lula so early, you will never go through that with her.

Violet said...

It was at least 2 months before I could leave my daughter at her daycare without her screaming when I left. But she's good now. It's just a matter of Lumyhead getting used to the place and forming attachments to some of the grownups there.

Jill said...

Well at least he looked good with his big boy backpack. Maybe that old pro Lula can show him the ropes on Monday.

p-man said...

We have to bribe our girl to come home from pre-school. $10. I'm not suggesting you try this because school is becoming a hugely expensive proposition since I can't leave her there overnight.

Devra said...

Am I your second favorite?