Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Why can't we just do things for her?

J is in 1st grade now. Her school has something called "Gator of the Week". I don't know if they do it in all the grades, but holy smokes if it doesn't stop soon she's going to need a therapist. I am not joking. I don't think parents attend them in 1st grade, because I was not notified about the time slot. I definitely would have been there for emotional support if I had known.

Due to our unfortunate last name, they tend to always be the 1st person in events like these. That is probably a good thing. Ripping off the bandaid and whatnot. I should have expected that since she cried and refused to answer any questions during her Kindergarten Gator spotlight, 1st grade was not going to be any different.

As I was doing my usual question and answer session after school yesterday (aka mom annoys us with 500 questions about our day as soon as we get home), J mentioned that she was Gator of the Week this week. Crap. I feigned an upbeat tone..."Did you do your presentation of the pages that we made?" "Yes." (lip starts to quiver, eyes cast out the window). Double crap. "Did you cry a little?" "Yes." (tears start to roll). Crap. Then I proceeded with my usual speech about how your classmates and teacher are your friends. I'm sure you did just fine. You don't have to be afraid, etc., etc.

Then B asked the inevitable question, "You cried?! Why did you cry?" No answer. I had to explain to B that she just gets nervous and scared when everyone is looking at her. B didn't really understand. She and I are kind of attention gluttons. We just wish that we could do everything for J. We both have a bad habit of answering questions for her, rather than making her talk for herself, and generally sheltering her from all of the social interactions that make her uncomfortable. We're enablers. Sigh.

When I signed her daily folder this morning underneath the ever present green smiley face it said. "When I introduced J as Gator of the Week this morning she started crying". Great. Thanks for reminding me that my kid is a complete emotional wreck in certain social situations. I wish that I had some great idea of how to help her. I just don't.


Wendy said...

Start preparing her now... they do it in 2nd grade too! On a happier note, (at least to me) I saw J in the hall today and her whole face light up with a smile and I even got a big wave! I tried for that all last year. It made my day. Sorry hers was so rough. :(

emilyw said...

So funny, your post. But I can relate. Chloe is having an interesting first year of public school. She LOVES attention, just not at school. What do we do?! I just want to take all the pain away.