Tu eres para mi, yo soy para ti
– Julieta Venegas
I don’t suffer from anxiety. At least I don’t think I do. But the type of anxiety I have been feeling these past couple of weeks has been pretty consuming. Fernandito beginning Tiny Tots has been hard, but nothing like what happened yesterday.
He had been telling me he didn’t like going. That he didn’t understand why parents had to leave. I talked with him and my mom said that he would never cry when she dropped him off, nor when she picked him up.
Fernandito has spent time away from me and/or my mom. He’s not used to structure, and the language might be part of the issue (Tiny Tots is English only, but his teachers are bilingual).
But yesterday my mom said she dropped him off and he seemed sad. She walked away and returned only to find him walking to the bathroom. The teacher allowed my mom to follow him, but Fernandito didn’t know my mom was behind him. My mom said that she saw and heard Fernandito crying to himself and calling for my mom over and over again in the bathroom to himself (single user bathroom) . He still didn’t know she was there and that she went up to him and hugged him. He said he didn’t want her to leave. She consoled him, but left eventually. When she picked him up, he told her he had cried a lot.
When she told me the bathroom story, I broke. I felt like I was falling apart. And when I was driving him home, he was still kind of sad. So I turned around at a red light, looked at him and said, “Fernandito, si tu ya no quieres ir a la escuela, ya no tienes que ir.”
I turned back around because I knew he wouldn’t want to respond, but it seemed like his mood shifted.
I am his mother. The person who should be sticking up for him. The person who should help him feel safe. And that is why I am giving him the option. I don’t know what he’s going to choose on Tuesday, the day he’s supposed to return to Tiny Tots, but I do know that I will stand by his choice. Because I trust him, but more importantly, I trust myself in choosing to do this.