Tonight was Seth's meet the teacher night at his new school. He's starting next week and will be going four days a week. I have high hopes for this year. This year is going to be the year Seth gets with the program and zooms to catch up with his peers. He's completely capable, he just has to want it. I'm really hoping spending three hours a day four days a week will jumpstart that desire.
Tonight was not an auspicious start.
We headed down the sidewalk, Coen in a sling, the rest of them walking behind me, Seth holding my hand, and it was all good. He was pleasant, walking happily next to me. We made it all the way into the preschool, right up to the classroom door. So close.
And yet so, so far away.
Seth saw the classroom looming beyond, looked up at me, looked at the room, and completely, utterly LOST IT. He collapsed directly in the doorway, blocking the entrance and exit of everyone everywhere. Ava and Jace jumped over him, completely unmoved, and Evany took one look at Seth and decided to show sisterly solidarity by throwing herself to the ground right next to him and matching him scream for scream.
His teacher looked over and said "Hi, Seth!"
His reputation had preceded him. Awesome.
I bent over, Coen protesting wildly, and dragged Seth and Evany out of the doorway, fake smile plastered to my face so that none of the parents with normal children would realize that my kids were wailing like banshees. Deflection! Distraction! Something else that starts with a D!
It didn't work. Moms were totally giving me the side-eye as they got out of there as quickly as possible. Evany lost interest in the screaming and ran off to explore the room, basically exactly what Seth was supposed to be doing. He, however, had reached a new level of insanity. He was kneeling on the floor, hands clamped tightly over his eyes, repeatedly making this ear splitting "Hee! Hee! Hee!...Hee! Hee! Hee!....Hee!" keening sound. Kind of like a lamaze on steroids.
At that point I realized that I totally had that kid...the one that just loses it at school. I will never forget Ava's classmate from her first year of preschool. She was totally that kid. I felt so sorry for her mom.
And now I'm her.
I told Seth I wasn't leaving him, I tried to pick him up, I tried it all. He wasn't buddging. No toy could distract him from his protest of preschool. So I started chatting with his teacher and tried to act like it was typical for my kid to refuse to remove his hands from his eyes. Which, actually, isn't that odd, so I have some practice. I tried to speed through Seth's list of implant stuff that I always have to cover with new people, and while his teacher was totally sweet, the things I was saying sounded so outlandish to me that it became like an out of body experience in which I was watching myself talk and could not begin to stop myself.
So because things were going so great already, I figured I'd just lay it all out there. Overshare a little. To sum it up, basically, I told her that Seth would scream when I dropped him off probably through Christmas, most likely refuse to talk to her or follow any commands not worded to make him think it was his idea, and then? Oh, he'd almost certainly pee on her floor at one point or another. I think my exact words were "He'll go to the bathroom if you tell him to, but he'll also happily pee all over himself. So...we're just so excited for school this year!"
We ended on that note, both uncomfortably smiling to beat the band, and I looked down at Seth, who was still "hee-hee-hee-ing" like a champ. I asked him if he wanted to go outsid, not really expecting a response. He immediately stopped crying, nodded his head, stood up, took my hand, and dragged me out of that room in two seconds flat. He turned around when he had made sure he was just over the threshold and safe in the hallway and looked back at his teacher very seriously before turning on his heel and marching away.
Of course by that point Evany was having a grand old time and cried when I made her put the toys down and leave. When Seth noticed, he literally rolled his eyes at her and said "Ebbie! Come on!" in a very demanding tone. How dare a toddler enjoy a preschool room designed to entertain? She's so easily influenced.
This is going to be an interesting year.