Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad


with 12 comments

Just before Cubby started preschool, I mused about if we were ready for this next step.  Here is how it went…

The first day, he’d been as excited as can be.  He happily carried in his backpack, and ran to get to his class.  Pudding and I stayed with him for a few minutes as he discovered new toys.  Then he cried when we left.  And when I say, I mean CRY.  I could hear his screams as I put Pudding back in the car to get to her school. I collected him early, and he was still crying when I turned up.  He’d spent the whole morning in either the teacher’s or assistants’ arms. His dummy (pacifier) never left his mouth.  He didn’t speak to anyone.  He didn’t interact with anybody else.   He wouldn’t eat or drink.  He didn’t focus on a single thing apart from the gate, waiting for me to collect him. I felt awful.

On Tuesday, he woke up in a state.  He knew what was coming, and he didn’t want any part of it.  When we arrived at school, his teacher had to pry his arms away from around my neck.  I skulked away with the promise that I’d return in 2 hours.
The following day, he attached himself to a particular assistant.  As long as he was with her, he was okay.  He wasn’t crying as I collected him.
The day after, he cried as usual when we got to school, but he sobbed that he wanted his dummy and I left, still feeling guilty. When I collected him, he was happy.  He’d stayed by the assistant all day, and he’d made a racecar in baking.
Still crying on the fifth day, he entered the classroom and asked where his favourite assistant was.  I waited until noon to collect him.  It was circle time, and he was the only child not in the circle, sitting by himself on a bench.  He couldn’t wait to tell me about the book they’d read together.

Then came a busy weekend, complete with dislocated elbow, a friend’s birthday party at the fire station, and giant slide.

The next day was Monday again, and the tears were back.  But when I collected him he was playing in the ball pit near the other kids.

On Tuesday there were more tears.  But  when I collected him, he told me the name of the boy he was playing with.

Wednesday, there would have been no tears, but then I dropped his cup on his head as I got him out of the car, and it was just.too.much.  He needed the dummy and his assistant to get over it.  By the time I returned, he was eager to tell me about his painting.

Today.  No tears.  No dummy (though he did stash one in his pocket).  No guilt.  Just a preschooler going to preschool, and a Mummy finally convinced she is doing the right thing by her boy.

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

September 29, 2011 at 10:13 am

12 Responses

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  1. Way to hang in there mom! 🙂


    September 29, 2011 at 10:20 am

  2. ugh. . . that’s the hardest! I can relate only too well to the prying off of little hands. It’s probably one of the worst feelings in the world.

    Jim W.

    September 29, 2011 at 12:48 pm

  3. You got this. He’s got this. Hardest transition ever for a kid, and in just a few short (ok, maybe long) days he’s doing great.


    September 29, 2011 at 12:54 pm

  4. wow, that sounds so heartbreaking, but somehow i knew there was a happy ending to the story. my two boys had really bad sep. anxiety at the start of preschool too. I read somewhere that it is usually harder for boys than girls.


    September 29, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    • *I* had terrible separation anxiety too, there might be a genetic component to it. You wouldn’t believe it from someone who willingly lives on a different continent from many of her loved ones. I guess I finally grew out of it. 🙂

      Spectrummy Mummy

      October 3, 2011 at 10:13 am

  5. It’s so hard to leave that crying isn’t it? You did fabulous through all that though! I’m so weak, I don’t know that I would have been able to do it. Luckily, my little guy always had an aide and really never bothered looking back so I was the only one crying when I dropped him off! 😉 Good job, Cubby!


    September 30, 2011 at 1:19 am

    • I think in some ways it was easier because I had to take Pudding to school after dropping him off, so I couldn’t linger and make things worse. I’m pretty certain I would have made it worse!

      Spectrummy Mummy

      October 3, 2011 at 10:10 am

  6. I’m working on getting my little boy enrolled in the preschool provided by our local school system. He’s 3 but his expressive language is much younger. While I think he’ll really enjoy being around kids his own age, I’m nit sure either one of us are really ready for it…he’s my baby, and my last….but we do have to let them go, a little at a time, don’t we?


    September 30, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    • Pudding was 3 when she started, and I found it hard. I was so used to interpreting her behaviour that I was afraid she would struggle to communicate. It probably did help her to shift from relying on me second-guessing and encourage her to make sure her needs were met. I guess we do have to let them go, but that doesn’t mean it is easy. Best of luck, and let me know how you and your little one get on.

      Spectrummy Mummy

      October 3, 2011 at 10:09 am

  7. Yay! This is such a hard transition. My son had a really hard time when I sent him to preschool. Thankfully, it all worked out.


    October 2, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    • It is hard, isn’t it? And they’re so little. Glad it worked out in the end for you too. 🙂

      Spectrummy Mummy

      October 3, 2011 at 10:06 am

  8. […] meant it was time for my Little Sheldon to become a preschooler, whether I was ready or not.   Meanwhile Pudding was planning ahead for Christmas.  I was […]

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