Spoke too soon (that's never happened before)

This morning Phoebe woke up and announced, "I don't feel like going to school. I'm stuffy and my legs hurt." This escalated to a full-blown tantrum ("But I don't feeeeel like going to schoooool!"). I confess to being bad at tantrums. My best strategy is to ignore, ignore ("I'm sorry that you're upset that you can't have ice cream before dinner, but I'm not discussing it anymore, so go over there if you're going to cry") -- but you can't ignore a child who's crying about not wanting to go to school when you actually have to get her to school. Comfort ("You'll feel better once you get there, and you'll see your friends!") and reason ("You have to go to school because I have to to work, and you can't stay home all by yourself.") also failed.

To make things even better, she locked her arms at her side every time I tried to get her dressed, so we wound up driving to school with her still in her nightgown. Wailing. I pulled into the parking lot, opened the back door, and said, "If you don't let me get you dressed right now, you're not watching TV for the rest of the week." She let me get her dressed, weeping piteously. I dragged her to the sidewalk. The crossing guard said, "Aw, Phoebe, what's the matter?" A little old lady on her way to church said, "The poor thing, she makes me want to cry!" Oh, and did I mention it was pouring rain?

I pulled Phoebe into the main building to try to get her calmed down. No luck. Her preschool teacher from last year walked by and tried to give her a hug. This didn't work either (I think Phoebe was embarrassed). I went to the school office to ask the secretary's permission to walk Phoebe in to her classroom (the elementary classrooms are in a separate locked building -- it's complicated). She took one look at Phoebe and said, "I'll call Mrs S and have her meet you at the door." We went over to the elementary building -- Phoebe still sobbing. "What's wrong with Phoebe?" a kid from Mallory's class asked. "Rough morning," I said grimly. Her teacher opened the door and said, "Phoebe, do you have the rainy day blues?" Phoebe sobbed. I gave her a hug and a kiss and gave her hand to Mrs S. She had to forcibly drag Phoebe inside.

As I was walking back to my car, I passed the principal, who had another wailing kindergartener by the hand. So at least Phoebe isn't the only one.


aimee said...

Aww, poor you. That is awful. At least I have never had to drive Noah to school with him still wearing pajamas. I might have still had mine on... Anyway, here is hoping tomorrow is better. A lot better.

Karen said...

That is bad. I don't know what to say as that is out of my experience! I guess if any of you had acted like that, it would have not done you any good anyway - much like Phoebe. Hope that tomorrow is better.