This week Vader began his 2nd year at preschool. While I am at home full time and am “happy” to have him all the time, we decided that in order to let me grow my business, give some 1-1 time for Chewy and get him acclimated to school life, preschool was in order. We found an AMAZING preschool in Halifax (DM for details). His transition to preschool was good, but not great. He had trouble listening sometimes, had trouble keeping his hands to himself and in general was a boy, which is a terrible catastrophe most days. This summer, he picked it up a notch.
We went on vacation to Calgary this summer. About halfway through our 10 day adventure, Vader made a startling discovery. WE really wanted to go to the Zoo, the science center, the Rockies. He realized that no matter how bad he acted, we were still going to go. This is not a good realization for a small person to make. It was a game changer. He immediately upped his tantrum game and basically challenged us to do something about it. As the summer went on, we had some truly awful days. We were terrified to send him back to school. They would obviously know what terrible parents we were given what a horrible child he was going to be.
I walked in on Wednesday and bumped into one of his teachers who was on her way downstairs. “Vader was soooo good today! He sat attentively in his chair. He was great.” Was she messing with me? My kid didn’t sit attentively in a chair if you tied him to it. Clearly she was messing with me. I made my way upstairs and came face to face with Vader and his new teacher, V. In her really awesome latin accent she told me that Vader was “fantastic. He wore his best listening ears all morning and helped some of the new kids who didn’t know what to do. He was just amazing and had a great day.” Am I being punked? Where’s Ashton?
I glanced over to the center director who was walking out of her office.
“Two different teachers told me Vader had a fantastic day…”
“Yeah. That’s cause he did.”
“So, he just doesn’t like us…”
“Maybe he just needed a change of scenery.”
You know how you can get bored hanging out with even your best of friends? Suddenly you’re picking fights with them for no reason and you just can’t wait to be away from them. Now imagine if you were with them EVERY MOMENT…OF EVERY DAY… FOR 3.5 YEARS… Of course Vader is enjoying a change of scenery. Who wouldn’t?
I know this was a tough week for a lot of people. Some of you had crying kids, some had kids that didn’t care that they were leaving you. Neither of those are fun. Some of you had kids get in fistfights while wearing their pink shirts on anti-bullying day and some of you had kids who got sent home on day one because they just couldn’t get their shit together.
School, like most things in life, is hard, yo. But remember, your kids will do terrible things and wonderful things. They’ll surprise you in ways that surprise you to even think about and the only thing you can do is ask them how their day was, give them a hug as often as they’ll let you and just be there when they get home (or when you get home). Parenting, like most things in life, is hard, yo.