Saturday, 3 December 2011

Floods of tears

Another thing I noticed about Tara at school, and in general is that she is an overly sensitive child who gets anxious easily. I saw other children with the same issues as Tara, but they were more laid back and did not get worked up to the extent that they stressed themselves out. But then again, all children are different.

So last night on the steps, amidst huge floods of tears Tara told me about her two new problems.

First, was the school jumper that was inside out when she took it off. She struggled to put in back on again and did not know how to 'unbundle' it.

Second was, the classroom door. Whenever she was slow to get her 'bundled' jumper and gloves and hat on, the other children and teachers were already outside in the playground, and the classroom glass door shut itself, leaving Tara alone inside, and very scared.

Inspite of telling myself not to worry about these 'small' issues, I do think these things are a big deal for a little child, just over four years old, who clings to her mother and cries for a full 45 minutes, explaining between sobs how she just can't do it.

To my credit, I held it together and stayed the course with her. I was tired, and have been unwell for the last few days. But I hugged her, heard her, and we decided on two courses of action. First I got her jumper in, and showed her how to 'unbundle' it around five to six times. She had a couple of tries herself, and I promised her we would practice till she got it. I reminded her of past successes like, learning how to put on her socks, her shirt, her pinafore, her shoes and lunch time issues...all of which she couldn't do when she was little, but was successful in doing now.

By now Tara was exhausted. She clearly needed to sleep but her mind was heavy with issues she needed to off load. She wiped her face and asked me to write a card to her teacher explaining that she struggled with the doors. I promised her I would talk to her teachers, and we would tackle the door together on Monday. As I put her in bed, she did fall asleep, maybe not stress free but totally exhausted. I couldn't do much after that either so I just went to bed right away.

We both tossed and turned last night, and Tara didn't wake up smiling this morning. Childhood is supposed to be the best time in our lives. Mine wasn't, and I'd promised myself that I would make sure my child was happy. Im a bit emotional, but will still agree that Tara is by and large a happy child. She is safe, intelligent, well provided for and has all the opportunities ahead of her. To expect plain sailing all through one's life is living in fool's paradise. I will have to teach Tara to expect hurdles in life. I will also have to teach her to jump over the hurdles, or sometimes just walk around them.

I cant be a magician and magic away problems from Tara's life, I can be Mum and teach her how to handle life.

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