Well, with Brendan sick on Wednesday night it was quite obvious he wouldn’t be going to school on Thursday. No big deal really his state testing had been completed on Wednesday and the teachers had been going light on the kids because of the test. He wasn’t scheduled for orchestra since he has that on Wednesday’s and Friday’s so there was nothing important at all that he was missing.
And even if there were he was in absolutely no condition to head to school anyway. He didn’t stop throwing up and fall asleep until about 3:30 Thursday morning. So really, I was in no condition to get the kids up and ready for school either, but I did anyway because Cameron and Kaylee still needed to go to school.
As soon as Cameron realized that Brendan was sick and staying home he assumed that meant that he got to stay home as well. I had to explain to him that he still goes to school even when Brendan can not. Boy was he ticked off about that. He likes to do what his big brother does, so usually I don’t have too much of a fight with Cameron about going to school because as long as Brendan is going he wants to go too. Evidently he thought it worked the exact same way with illness and with Brendan staying home that’s what Cameron wanted too.
Once I got it through his head that, yes, he would be going to school, he began to whine and cry that he was too scared to go to school by himself. I didn’t buy that excuse either. Yes he would have to go into the school on his own, but it’s not like it’s hard. There are crossing guards at every intersection telling you when to cross and when not to. He has to cross exactly one intersection before he hits the sidewalk directly in front of the school so it isn’t like he even has to go very far.
From there he and Brendan separate anyway since the 4th graders line up at a completely different door from the Kindergartners so it’s not like he needs Brendan to find his way from that point. Finally there’s getting down to his classroom which he does on his own every single morning since the Kindergarten classrooms are at the back of the main floor of the school and the 4th grade classrooms are downstairs in the basement. So there was no reason for him to be scared about getting to school.
During the school day he’s always on his own and had no fears about that. And as for picking him up I promised to meet him out front of the school right where Brendan does so he wouldn’t have to try and find me on his own. Not that I had a choice in that matter, his teacher at the beginning of the school year said that she couldn’t release Cameron to walk anywhere without a parent or Brendan picking him up directly from her.
Now, I don’t get this. All I was looking for was for the two boys to meet at a tree near the corner of the school property so they could walk down the block to my car together. They would still be on school property under the watchful eyes of about a dozen teachers who patrol the property after school. She swears that as Kindergarteners they are just too young to go off by themselves and she requires parents to pick them up directly. If that’s true then some of the other Kindergarten teachers have a lot more faith in their class then she does because I see Kindergarten students walking to their parents cars alone all the time. How do I know they’re Kindergarteners? Because the Kindergarten kids are dismissed before any of the other classes are and they’re the first ones coming down the street.
That aside, after promising Cameron I would meet him in front of the school he said that he always meets Brendan in the office which was then confirmed by Brendan. No problem, meeting him in the office would actually make it a little easier since there was less space to look in and less kids to deal with. So I promised him that after school I would be waiting in the office for him so we could go home.
After school I parked my car and made my way up to the school. By the time I’d walked up there kids were already beginning to spill out of the building by the hundreds. I gingerly pushed my way through the crowd of kids and snuck through the door and into the office. Knowing the Kindergarteners are released first I was surprised to see that Cameron was not waiting there for me. I didn’t panic though he’s generally pretty slow about things and I thought he might still be collecting his stuff somewhere.
Finally after a couple of minutes I asked the secretary if she’d seen him. She, unlike me, looked very worried when she told me no she hadn’t. I told her it was not a big deal and that he probably forgot I’d be in here and had headed to the car or was waiting outside. She said if I didn’t find him outside she’d page the Kindergarten classrooms for him. I agreed and headed for the door. As I went to open it, who should be on the other side but Cameron and his teacher.
Evidently he hadn’t told her that I was picking him up in the office until that moment. I explained to her that both boys told me they met in the office and she said that never ever happens. They wait outside until all her other kids are picked up and, since Brendan is usually one of the last kids out of the school, they wait in the entryway not the office. Oh well, at least now I know for next time.
I talked to Cameron on the way home and he was no longer scared since I had picked him up right where I said I would. It made me happy to see that he understood the way things should work and that there was nothing to be scared of. I reminded him that he needed to get used to this because after next year Brendan wouldn’t be around any more and he’d have to do all of this stuff on his own.
It seemed that all was well. Until, of course, I reminded the boys that Brendan was due for his pediatric checkup next week and that he’d miss the first hour of school on that day. Cameron instantly went into panic mode and swore he couldn’t make it through school alone. I guess things never really change.