I don’t think I can adequately express how much I’m looking forward to Jack returning to school.
If all goes well, he’ll start first grade in about five weeks – at least, if I manage to get him registered. The school year has completely snuck up on me and now I’m scrambling. I really don’t know what we have to do or when or how to make sure he goes to school. I have emails and voicemails out to the district and his case manager at the clinic in hopes that they can guide me. I feel totally unprepared for this.
With that said, it needs to happen. Jack has very obviously suffered from the lack of social interaction thanks to so much isolation over the last seven months.
We had a playdate at the neighbors’ house last week – they have two boys aged seven and nine (or so). They have a tree house and a trampoline and all kinds of stuff. Jack spent a bunch of time digging through toys by himself, arguing about how to play in the tree house, or stomping off in a huff. He wasn’t fun to play with at all, at least not until he got on the trampoline. (Apparently jumping brings everyone together!)
This scenario has been played out many times over the last few months. We go to an event and Jack gets upset at the other kids – his usual amount of sensitivity has ramped up to an all-time-high since he was diagnosed with cancer – and then he is glued to me. Or he ignores the kids from the get-go and instead sits next to me and asks that I look at every.single.thing he does. “Mom, watch this! Look at this! Mooooo-ooooom!!! Help me find this! Help me do this! Get this for me! WATCH!”
No one else will do. MOM has to do it! Mom has to help with games, help find lost toys, pick out clothes, do the bedtime routine, get together lunch or dinner….watch, watch, watch or fetch, fetch, fetch.
This weekend as we made our way to Jack’s cousin’s first birthday party, Jack attempted to negotiate moving the party to our house. He didn’t feel like going to the party and for the second time that week, the park held absolutely no interest for him. Why can’t everyone just come to our house? I just don’t feel like going.
I let him know we would stop by for a bit and if he still didn’t feel up to it, we could leave early. Luckily he cheered up as soon as we got there and we ended up staying for a few hours! For those few blissful hours, he didn’t even acknowledge I existed. I got to have real adult conversations! Uninterrupted! Gee, I sound just like a mother to a newborn who finally sleeps for more than 30 minutes at a time!
Afterward I wanted to call every family member we have in the area and beg them to schedule a party with their kids. Please, family, distract my child! Get him playing like a normal kid again!
I am counting down the days until school – for the mental and social stimulation for Jack and the break from all this intensity for me. I love my kid but he seriously needs to let go of me, chill out and GO PLAY.