This Is Likely To Be Quite a Scene

I’ve been waiting for this day, this morning, for a long time. I haven’t been waiting in an anticipatory I-can’t-wait sort of way, but rather more of a the-other-shoe-has-to-drop-sometime sort of way.

See, even though Jack has been struggling, struggling, struggling at school, and often says he doesn’t like school, he has remained pretty compliant about going. This morning that changed. He was in a bad mood to begin with and balked at the clothes on his shelf and the breakfast in his bowl.

But the worst he saved for leaving the house. He started sobbing and refused to walk. True to form, he couldn’t articulate why he didn’t want to go to school. When I asked, all he could come up with was, “You!” But it was clear he didn’t want to go.

Usually when I drop the guys off at school, I pull up, push the button to open the van door and they get out. Today I didn’t even bother trying that. When I pulled up, I put the car in park, put on the emergency brake, got out of the car and walked around to the side door. The principal happened to be standing there.

“This is likely to be quite a scene,” I said.

I dragged Jack out of the car, flashing back to the solid month or two last year that Jack screamed and cried and went limp twice a day when I dropped him off at his two different schools. The principal offered to take Jack to his class, and I drove off, my free hand at my temples.

The rest of Jack’s morning was hard. Both the principal and his aide took him on separate walks to calm him down. He still had a hard time. When I stopped by to drop off his backpack, which I’d forgotten to pass to the principal, the school secretary, who I’ve barely spoken to, but who apparently knows Jack well, told me to hide in the office while she took the pack to Jack—something that doesn’t usually happen. (Trust me, I’m a backpack forgetter.) The assistant principal stopped me to tell me that he’d had a rough morning. The principal stopped me to offer words of encouragement.

Here’s my thing: if it’s this hard for me to hear about it, how hard must it be for Jack?

30 thoughts on “This Is Likely To Be Quite a Scene

  1. I am so sorry. I have vivid memories of carrying bubba out to the school bus, his hands in a death grip around the door frame, his feet kicking, his eyes so scared. That was the year I stopped working outside of the home. Meanwhile, take your data for the need of that 1:1 aid. Jack’s telling you something…it might be difficult, but keep listening. You’re doing good momma. I know it’s hard.

  2. On the plus side, how AWESOME are your principals and secretary? They sound like supportive folks.
    I, too, am sorry that Jack had a rough day. May any future instances of the same be few and far between!

  3. That depends on why he was having a hard time in the first place, like whether he was feeling mad or sad or what. It will probably stay with you longer than it will stay with him, that’s almost certain.

    Maybe when he said, ‘you!’, he meant that he wanted to stay home with you today?

    I hope tomorrow is better, and that this is not the beginning of a long and upsetting road for all of you. Habits are so easy for them to get into.

  4. *Hugs*

    Crappy day, but as little.birdy said, your school does sound very supportive.

    Hopefully you can find out what it is he couldn’t tell you.

    You’re doing great.

  5. oh m dear. I know this sucks right now and it’s killing you, but it will be ok. Hopefully this will help him get a one on one aid. And maybe he needs a break. Maybe he’s been doing so much that he needs a mental health day. Talk to the principal about letting Jack get the day off and let him have a day to relax and get back on track.

  6. Oh, I’m sorry – that’s hard, especially if he can’t tell you what’s bothering him. We have mornings like that once in awhile, but tomorrow is another day and hopefully a better one for you both.

  7. Having a child that just can’t tell me how he feels or what he wants a lot of the time, I can understand how frustrating that must have been. I also know that sometimes I feel like I just don’t want to go to work and if anyone asked me, I’d be hard pressed to give a coherent explanation. Sometimes it just doesn’t feel right. I feel for Jack – but I also feel for you. Hard day.

  8. Your last sentence about broke my heart. I know this has to be so rough for all of you. You are handling it so well though, I would have driven off in tears and been sick with worry all day. You’re a trooper and so is Jack, hang in there.

  9. Don’t you just want to take them and run off to the country and forget about school sometimes? But life isn’t like that. I like what Perksofbeingme said – one more step to getting an aide perhaps. But poor Jack. Suckity, suck, sucks.

  10. Poor little Jack. Do his teachers, principal, aide, or anyone else, have any ideas about what might be making this so hard for him? Could you maybe go in and observe? When I worked in a special ed school, the mother of a little guy with autism who I was an aide for wanted to observe one day to see how he was doing, and she observed by peering out from inside a closet!!! (So the little boy wouldn’t see her, because we felt like if he knew she was there she wouldn’t be getting a view of what his day was genuinely like!)

  11. Oh I’m late as usual, this post was yesterday so I’m hoping things are better than today. I do agree though that the memory will last longer for you than for Jack but it’s so heartbreaking when it happens. Still – I think you did the right thing by taking him. Hopefully one of two things will happen – or maybe both – you will either find out what’s causing this, or it will smooth out. I’m hoping for both.
    Hang in there.

  12. These days happen. We even still have them with Joey, especially if he is having a tired or not-feeling-great sort of day. We still have the special ed bus because he can still melt down if his morning is rough and the bus is late. And being upset and not-feeling-good means less useful language. Ugh.

    Lots of ***HUGS*** to you, lots of ***HUGS*** to Jack, glad that today was improved.

  13. My blood pressure used to rise every day as I went to pick up Edward from kindy…I actually developed some palpitation thing…it’s just so…so…so…

    Well, it’s so.

    And you are not alone.

    That doesn’t make it better, but at least it’s the truth.

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