Here's the latest saga:
Last night was Pre-K3 and Pre-K4 orientation at Alise's new school. We were there with bells on! I had the camera, the goody bags...Wayne had worked so hard that day to make it and he was there...it was gonna be THE perfect night. We were going to find out who Alise's teacher was...Alise was going to see her friends....the gym was decorated in a western theme and it was so cute...we were going to go out to eat to celebrate...And then, everyone started piling in and all of a sudden, I felt so OLD! It's not even worth me going into the story about the teeny-boppy moms and their skimpy clothes.... My first clue that this night was going to be a disaster should have been the fact that Alise's name tag wasn't even on the table with the other pre-schoolers. We couldn't even find her name in with the pre-k4 group. A teacher was standing nearby and offered to make Alise her name tag. Okay. I could handle that. For snacks, there was little brown bags of popcorn or cheese puffs and lemonade. Alise picked cheese puffs and Mommie forgot the wipes. We were wearing a brand new smocked dress (of course!) by the way. By this time, we had met up with Emma. Lori and I had to almost rope those two together to get them to sit still and not climb the bleacher seats.
Alise kept turning to me asking, "Mommie, where's Allie? Where's Allie?"
"She'll be here, baby, just wait a few more minutes."
Shortly after, Allie arrived with her parents. Emma and Alise took off running across the gym. M and K came over to sit with us and M said, "Did you see how those two girls just ran over and hugged Allie?" I thought, "This is going to be a great year!"
Then, another one of Alise's Yellow House friends, Olivia, arrived with her parents. All the goody bags had been handed out.
Ms. P, the principal, lead us in The Lord's Prayer (Catholic school, remember?)and then amid all the chitter-chatter and rustling of bags, she filled the parents in on parking, drop off lines, paperwork, tardiness (Oh, yes! Alise is only allowed 2 tardies per semester!) etc. Then, she started with the four year olds and began calling out the names of the children to go with their teachers.
Next, it was our turn. The teacher that I had chosen for Alise was up first. Since Allie's last name begins with an A, her name was called first. The next name, then the next. Then, Olivia's name was called. I could see Lori looking at me, but I wouldn't look at her. More names. Then, Emma's name. Lori looked at me, but I still refused to look at her. I took more pictures. The last name was called and me, Wayne, and Baby Girl, were still sitting on the bleachers with a host of other three year olds and their parents. It was all I could do to hold my tears inside. As I watched the group and Alise's friends walk away, I heard Alise say, "Mommie, where are they going?" My heart just broke.
Separated. All alone.
Alise's teacher is Ms. K. You'll be hearing lots about her. (She's the lady in the gray in the picture above. Ms. P is in the black with the microphone.) But I couldn't even look at her when we were in Alise's new classroom and she was going over things like book bags (Yes, the poodle one I got off Etsy won't work), changes of clothes, uniforms, Mass days, etc. My mind couldn't function. I just wanted to run out the door. She put some sign up sheets on the table for parents to sign up for field trips and parties and things like that. I told Wayne that I was just ready to go. I told Alise to come on and she asked, "Are we going to see Allie and Emma now?"
On the way to leave, we ran into M and K in the hallway. She said, "Laura, I am so sorry that Allie and Alise didn't get in the same class." I put my smiley face on. She went on, "I asked Ms. T and she said that the two classes do everything together, so the girls will still get to see one another." I told her that someone had told me that, too (I wasn't lying). Then we talked about vacations and the more I talked the more my eyes just refused to cooperate and they just welled up. I said, "I'm sorry, M, but we need to go."
I cried all the way home with Alise asking me, "Mommie, are you sad? Why are you sad?" There was no celebrating.
I knew I had to pull myself together. I mean, my goodness! My three year old wasn't even acting this way! I kept telling myself, "But that's because she doesn't understand that she's separated from her friends." I just wanted to know why in the world she couldn't have had one - just ONE - little friend in her room?! Fine, that she didn't get the teacher I wanted her to have. I could live with that. But ONE friend? Com'on!
So....I did what I had to do. I pulled myself together. Wayne fixed Alise some supper and afterwards she and I had a talk. I explained to her that her Yellow House friends were in Ms. T's class and that they would be right next door to her. Do you know what she said to me?! She said, "Will I still get to see them, Mommie?" I told her, "Yes, Baby, you will still get to see them each and every day!" She said, "Okay!" and ran off to get something out of the living room!
So, yes! I had another meltdown yesterday. It's one of my biggest weaknesses: my own expectations.
This morning, I dropped Alise's lunch off at Yellow House. Ms. M, the director, was in the hall and asked how orientation went. I told her how the others were in the same class and that Alise was by herself. And for reasons that I can't go into here, she told me that it was a good thing. After talking to Ms. M, I felt much better about the situation. I am almost relieved. Alise needs to broaden her friendships and deep down, I truly believe this. It's just hard to let go of her first friendships.
So there you have it! My own edition of "Freaky Friday," only ours happened on a Tuesday.