“Don’t leave me alone!”

Not a cry for help from me, but rather Austin., though I am still coming to grips with being an at-home dad to no one for two hours a day. Kind of an identity crisis, if you will (which my buddy Andrew Knott wrote about way better than I could)

IMG-3978
this is no longer his end-of-the-day spot, he’s since joined the rest of the class on the carpet for the ‘Goodbye Song’

Understandably, Austin’s still getting used to his new of 5-days-a-week, AM preschool schedule. Before school began, the only schedule he’d ever known was a silly goose time with me, at home.

 

I’d be lying if I told you we expected it to go off without a hitch, precisely because of what I just mentioned: he was at home with me full-time for his entire life. Couple that with him being the most bullheaded of the three boys and you’ve got a recipe for disaster, a recipe that even if I had and was able to cook, wouldn’t be eaten.

 

Towards the end of last week, Week 3, it’s gotten markedly better and seems like he’s headed in the right direction – and it continued into this week. There’s no doubt writing that will jinx it.

I know we’re not the only ones to have a kid struggle heading to school for the first time and we aren’t the last, so I know it’s completely normal.

Here’s a recap of his days so far at preschool:

  • Days 1-4
    • excited driving up to school
    • sulked walking through doors at school
    • screaming/crying/weeping walking into his classroom
    • parting words: “Don’t leave me alone in the classroom!”
    • spent all day in the reading nook
    • didn’t do Circle Time with rest of the class
    • excited to leave, waved goodbye to his teachers
  • Days 5-9
    • excited driving up to school
    • skeptically walked through doors at school
    • begrudgingly walked into his classroom
    • still spent most of his time in the reading nook
    • reluctantly participated in Learning Centers with classmates
    • didn’t do Circle Time with rest of the class
    • excited to leave, waved goodbye to his teachers
  • Day 10
    • excited driving up to school
    • confidently strutted through doors at school
    • optimistically walked into his classroom
    • moved from reading nook to center of the room, immovable
    • didn’t participate in Learning Centers or Circle Time
    • excited to leave, waved goodbye to his teachers
  • Days 11-13
    • excited driving up to school
    • confidently strutted through doors at school
    • marched right into his classroom
    • explored the entire room
    • participated in Learning Centers and Circle Time
    • excited to leave, waved goodbye to his teachers

The one constant throughout his first three weeks is his refusal to pee at school. In his pants, yes, several times. In the toilets, no, not even once. But like I said, we’re headed in the right direction.

One day, hopefully soon, he’ll be happy that I left him alone in his classroom. And I won’t have to bribe him with gum (sugar-free Glee Gum, so I don’t feel so bad giving it to him every day) to participate in class.

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