Thursday, 15 January 2009

NOT Without A Shadow Of A Doubt

Poor Maxwell.
Going to school is a major adjustment for him.
He has never been away from Mommy.
The times Mommy was not with him, he was at least at home and with his family and all his toys and things he is familiar with.

Yesterday I asked him in a quiet conversation about his friends in school.
He declared that the only friend he has is his brother.

Today, at the door of his class, he clung on to my shirt crying in the most agonizing way,
"I want to go with you... I want to go with you..."
While his teacher pulled him away, prying his little hands of my shirt.

Last night he held me tight as he was falling asleep and just kept calling "Mommy... Mommy..." until he was finally asleep.
He didn't want any song sung to him.
Then in the early morning he cried in his sleep a lot.

Throughout today he kept me within sight.
If not engaging me in an activity or conversation, I had to be in the same room at least, even if I was doing something else and he was playing by himself.
The moment I disappear, he will cry and yell for me, not wanting me to go away.

Just now, during dinner we talked about what to do after dinner.
He asked if we were going to school.
I said, "No, not now. School is tomorrow, when we wake up from our sleep."
After that he kept saying to me over and over,
"After we sleep and wake up, it's not tomorrow, ok?"


This is so painful to deal with.
Did I make a mistake in signing him up for school at 3*?
He is still so much a baby in some ways, although we have been preparing him for the arrival of the baby brother in March.


I was already contemplating pulling him out if he does not adjust well to being away from Mommy.
I was planning to see how he is by the end of the week.
I don't know how much "trauma" he can handle.

Some relief/improvement:
At least today he didn't cry when I came to pick him up from school.
In fact, he quite happily showed me what he was doing and what he did in class: some colouring and some pasting.

Just as I was leaving the school grounds, I mentioned my intention to the teacher.
The teacher says hang in there. He is getting better.
He actually talked to the teachers today when he was not crying.

So all will have to bear this pain and burden together:
Max, his parents, his grandparents and his ever-doting Ee-ee.

* I also tried this with Micah when he was 3 and he had really bad nightmares.
He would wake up middle of the night and tell me he does not want to go to school and that he does not want to go anywhere. He only wants to stay at home. He would even hesitate going to my mom's and refused to go for playgroup with anyone else but me.

At the end, I pulled him out and we started again last June when he turned 4. He cried for a few days, but we were able to talk about it without him crying. Also, no nightmares this time.
Now he has forgotten his crying days and kept telling his brother he MUST go to school which really upsets him to tears.


Cuddly Family said...

they get over it quickly lah.. they will have good days and bad..

luckily he got koko with him.

Ling That's Me said...

this is so trying period for us, isn't it?

if the teacher feedback that he is slowly speaking up, he has shown some improvement. hang on there!

Ann said...

I guess compare it with Micah and if he seems better - as in not crying in school, then maybe just hang in there! And I guess with the right words, an elder brother can help!

But mummy knows best the condition of her boys in the end...and if you really feel it is too early, no harm waiting too!

hissychick said...

The adjustment period is hard, but do hang in there for a while (I'm talking at least six to eight weeks). Max will soon understand that Mummy always comes back and that it is rather fun to make friends and play with them!

It's even harder when they are younger and have less verbal skills. I'm dreading starting E in daycare next week in preparation for my return to work in two weeks time...

Tina said...

oh no the poor little guy. hopefully he will get through this soon.

Its cause hes so used to be with his mommy all time i guess he misses his normal routine, and feels sad about these new strange surroundings. good luck.

thanks for adding me to your blog list. i shall add you to mine too :)

mumsgather said...

I used to hang around my girl's kindy quite often and I saw that many of the crying kids get over it and become happy playful kids by term end, then term starts and the crying starts again. :)

I think it all depends on what you want for them and your kids temperament. Only you know what is best for them and for you. No one else can tell you what is right or wrong in terms of timing, age, etc.

For me, I believe there is a time and place for everything and 2 or 3is too young. I sent my girl at age 6 and now my boy at age 5. So, I didn't have to deal with the stress of tears and separation anxieties since they are well prepared by then but maybe thats why my girl is in tears now in primary school. Hahaha.

Moomykin said...

Thank you, all you Mommys,
for your sharing and encouragement.

Today he didn't cry at all.

He whines a little in the car about not wanting to go to school, but he was all happy when I picked him up.

Another week should be all well... fingers crossed.

Angeline said...

seriously, if it is NOT a compulsory thing to go to school at that age, and more importantly, if the little one is not ready.... don't put him and yourself through this.

but I saw your reply above and super happy to hear that he is getting over it already... GOOD!

then, I would say, persevere girl, persevere....