By Heather O.
First, she started Kindergarten this year. Unfortunately, she had chicken pox the week right before, so she didn’t get to meet her teacher, see the school, or generally get prepared at all for that first day. So when the first day arrived, she. was. a. mess.
And she’s continued to struggle at school, anxiety wise. She didn’t know how to write all her letters, and I found her up late at night, in tears, with a pen and paper and a flashlight, trying to correctly write her /z/s. She obsesses over every little mark her teacher writes on all her work, asking over and over and over again why, if she made a mistake, the teacher circled it. She was freaking out over one assignment so much that I had to throw it away, to show her that it wasn’t important (which it wasn’t) and to get her to stop talking about it.
The girl, she is stressed.
It’s gotten a little better, though. A few emails to the school, a few lunches with the school counselor to dampen her anxiety, and some new friends have made things go better for her. She’s reported having some genuinely good days, and has started to come home off the bus with a smile on her face.
Until her friend dumped her.
Yes, that’s what Little Sister told me this morning, that her new best friend, Alice, the girl who giggles and shares secrets with her on the bus, has found a NEW best friend, because Little Sister was sick this week and missed a day of school.
I don’t care who you are, when a 5 year old girl breaks down and wails that her heart is breaking because her friend “dumped” her for somebody else, you want to just sit down and wail with her.
I remember these times, the small heartbreaks that happen every day at school—a person telling you your hair looks funny, or that your pants are the wrong color (I was a child of the 80s, yes, I wore purple pants to school), or that your shoes are wrong. Oh man, the shoes! Little Sister is already begging me for a pink pair of cowboy boots, because somebody named Megan wears them, and Megan is very very cool.
The only fashion request my son has ever made from me is if I could buy him an “Angry Birds” T-shirt.
Girls are a whole different animal. My goodness.
The other sad part of Little Sister’s life happened last week, after our Trunk or Treat. She didn’t go, because she was invited to her first sleepover party. I wasn’t comfortable letting her sleep over, so I told her and the mom throwing the party that I would pick Little Sister up after the trunk or treat, around 9:30 or 10:00. It was a cupcake wars party, super cute, and she came home with 2 gorgeous cupcakes that she had decorated.
Now y’all know I’m not a huge stickler about food, but still, I wouldn’t let her eat those babies at 10:00 at night, nor did I let her eat them for breakfast the next morning. I promised her that when we got home from church, she could have them. And, even better, she didn’t have to share with her brother, who had a pillowcase full of candy. Those were my rules–both of them got a huge sugar haul, and hence wouldn’t have to share with each other.
Maggie ate the cupcakes while we were at church.
It took Little Sister a second to figure it out. She came to me, holding an empty cupcake holder, and scolding me said, “Did you eat my cupcakes!?!??” I assured her I had not. She yelled at her brother, “DID YOU EAT MY CUPCAKEs?” He assured her he had not, and since my son pretty much hates any kind of chocolate baked good, and was also gorging himself on candy, I believed him.
DH was out of town, which left only one culprit.
When I gently suggested that our dog was the one who ate the cupcakes, Little Sister looked down at the empty cupcake holder, looked back at me, and then studied the dog. When the truth dawned on her, she wailed, “Maggie ate my cupcakes!! They’re gone!!” And then she crumpled to the floor, a picture of emotional devastation.
Oh, the humanity.
You can also guess how the rest of the afternoon went. Since Little Sister was denied her sugar feast, she decided she deserved some of her older brother’s candy after all, and tried to take it from him.
You can imagine how that went.
Yup, it was a super awesome Sabbath at our house last week. Super spiritchewl.
Like I said, being 5 is tough.