Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tiny Details of a Big Milestone

Reid crawled out of bed this morning and let out a huge old croupe cough. On his first day of school. Sigh.

Ben stood in his bedroom door and Reid asked, "Are there little people that live in your brain and tell you to do good and bad things?"

I couldn't quiet hear the response, other than to tell Ben was reassuring him that, no, little people do not live inside your brain, your conscience does. However, Reid continued with this deep question:  "Do they crawl up your nose and control your brain?"

Ben asked if he got that idea from a TV show, but he said no. And I believe him. I really think he came up with that whole conversation all on his own. I'm glad he's thinking about "the good and bad things" and how he can decide which little person to listen to. When asked what kind of bad things they tell him to do he said "roar ... and push Nell." Yes, buddy, those are bad things. Please, stop doing them!

At breakfast Ben gave Reid a father's blessing. Reid was so still and thoughtful through out the whole thing. I was impressed with the level of maturity he approached the whole thing. He was blessed to choose the right and obey his teacher. He was blessed to learn and to grow both socially and academically. I loved the whole thing. There was such a lovely spirit in our home right afterward.

Then his croup-like cough kept flaring up. I googled it at first, but there are just no good websites for health needs. So I decided to call our pediatrician. I just wanted to know if croup is contagious -- or what exactly it is. They told me I needed to make a Doctor's appointment. And I trusted them, so I loaded up all the kids and headed to the hospital, or "medical campus" if you will.

I got answers to all my questions. Croup is really just a cold, it isn't notably contagious. When passed, it may only manifest itself as a runny nose or a slight cough. There's no real knowing who will get the croup cough and who won't. It's just all part of the common cold. I liked the Doctor we saw, he gave me a special bit of confidence, but it really all felt a little over done just to get some answers to my questions. I wish there was a pediatric nurse line, like there is a pregnant lady nurse line. I really didn't think Reid was sick or needed any treatment, I just wanted to know if there were any special instructions for handling that seal bark.

Anyway ...

We got home in time for lunch. I feel like lunch will be a big production now, since I have to fill my little boy up before sending him out the door for preschool. I put Coraline down for a nap and then started a special little photo shoot with my handsome boy. I took about 50 pictures. Two of them turned out well.

And I use the word "well" loosely with that second one. It was kind of just a goof shot, but I feel like it captures Reid's thinking face (and crooked mouth). 

All morning (and night, really) I had little anxious feelings in my tummy. I think it was just the anticipation of such a huge mommy milestone, but I really had to try hard to calm my excitement over the last 24 hours. Reid's anticipation seemed to bounce back and forth between excited and nervous. When I told him about the Doctor's appointment he reminded me "I have to go to school today!" I could tell he didn't want to miss it. But as the morning grew on he kept thinking of things he might not be able to do alone. Mostly bathroom related things. 

While waiting for the bus he let out a large fart, so I reminded him what we say after farts and then told him he should try to hold those in during school. Sensing he didn't really know what I meant, I asked "Do you know how to hold a fart in buddy?"

He shook his head and smiled. About a minute later he looked up at me with a little fear in his eyes, "I'm scared to go to preschool. Mommy, what if I have to fart and my teacher can't help me?"

"Why would you need your teacher to help you with a fart?" We all giggled over that one. I seriously couldn't believe I was about to send my little boy off into the world and his biggest concern was his farts. To be four again, huh?

Reid and I both squealed when we spotted the bus. It was the most genuine smile he gave all morning. So I turned the phone to selfie mode and kissed him right on the cheek!

I crawled on the bus after him to help him buckle up. The moment he heard the "click" he said "Okay, go mom!" The bus driver chuckled and said "You're embarrassing him!" His independence was adorable. I could tell he was confident and proud. Ready for his new adventure. As I watched the bus drive away I heard his little sister fall apart. 

"Don't take my brother!!! No!!! Reido!!! I want REID!" Nell was hysterical. "I want to go on the bus with my brother!" I tried to take a picture of her tantrum, but she kept turning her back to me. The only way I could get her to look at me and stop crying was to ask, "Do you want to go inside and eat some chocolate?" What a fabulous habit I'm creating. She's American though, so I might as well be the one to teach her food (temporarily) solves emotional problems (while creating much larger ones); she's gonna learn that somewhere!

As I was putting her to sleep I thought of how easy the whole experience was. I didn't have damp eyes. I had no desire to follow his bus to school. I was just so excited and proud. Then ... I remembered I'd forgot to put his name tag on him. We were given his name tag at his back to school open house and I'd put it on the table last night, so I wouldn't forget. But I forgot. I debated how important it would be, and decided I'd better run down to the school and give it to him. So lucky me, I saw him get off the bus at school (and run to me for a quick hug), put his name tag on him, and then saw him hang his bag up before heading off to class. 

Don't follow this story line so closely that you notice I left Coraline home, napping in the crib. That's a detail you should ignore. And now, for the photo outtakes:

Look at that somber face waving goodbye from the bus, no wonder he was upset when I followed him on, he'd already emotionally departed from me.

I wish I'd caught a picture of him coming home. He was beaming, and in a full sprint. Nell was shrieking and hugged him as quickly as she could. He was also a sweaty mess. When I asked him his favorite part of the whole day he said "riding the buses." He told Ben, "I rode the short bus to school and the long bus home." He was also excited to tell me he played on the playground. Just like tot time. They sang songs and played play-doh "oh, and all the kids had snacks, but I didn't have a snack."

I knew that might happen. The handbook mentioned each kid gets a milk, and that parents can include a snack but that a child this age can easily make it three and a half hours without food. And I agreed. My child is just fine eating lunch at 11, having a milk at school, and then eating a snack when he gets home at 3. So I didn't send a snack. But of course, every other kid had one and so his teacher gave him gold fish.

Ugh, American food culture. I don't want my kids to eat every couple of hours! So many poor habits. And fixing most of them is completely out of my control. Oh well, tomorrow I'll send him with a snack. 


Riki Lee said...

I loved this whole post :)

Claudia said...

Your little boy is growing up too fast!!! He will have a fabulous year at school....as long as his mom remembers to send a daily snack!

Grandpa B said...

Glad he got over his croup. He's growing up Mom. Time to cut those apron strings.

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