First day of Preschool

I think of myself as an experienced mother. My first child has survived me for 11 years so far, and she seems to be doing well. I've done the first day of school a couple of times, and the new nanny even more times. And I'm not high on the "feeling" scale, so a few tears never bothered me a bit.

But I have to admit, I've been a bit nervous this time around. First, Isaac has had a lot of change in his little life, and he's just settling in here in Kenya. Because of that, he's been showing more separation anxiety fears than usual. You know, wanting Anya to stay with him in Sunday School, freaking out if he looses sight of me on the playground. Plus, it's a Kenyan school. He'll be the only 'mzungu' or foreign student, and while I love that, I'm also nervous because of the cultural differences in handling kids.

Well, today was Isaac's first day of pre-school. We toured the place on Friday, and he loved the look of the playground. He admitted he was a little scared, but OH, the pride on his face as he showed all our neighbors his new uniform! Have you ever seen anything so cute???

So this morning came. He excitedly got dressed. He jumped up in the car, posed for one more picture, and skipped up the steps of the school. We went to the office, where they had his new teacher waiting for him so she could escort him to his class. So thoughtful! I introduced them, and then kissed his cheek. And without warning, all hell broke loose!!! Screaming, kicking, clawing at the door, pure terror in his eyes, tears and snot pouring down his face all over his sweater (which I only bought 1 of, because, really, how dirty will he get a sweater he'll only wear in the mornings?). I tried to hold him, but that didn't even work. So they asked me to leave because my presence was only making it worse. And as I walked down the stairs, still hearing his howling reverberating down the hall, I burst into tears myself! I sat in the car, sobbing, wondering what I was doing to my own flesh-and-blood, wondering if it's worth it. And in faith, I drove away, waiting to hear my phone ring at any minute. 3 hours later now, and it still hasn't rung. Either he's doing better, or the 'tough-love' Kenyan approach is winning out and he's still inconsolable. I have no idea which!

The Kenyan school year follows the calendar, so he'll have 3 weeks of school until the year is over (Nov. 1) and won't start again until January. Please pray for him and for us. Pray that he adjusts and falls in love with his classmates and teacher, and that if that doesn't happen, that we'll have the wisdom to know when to call it quits on this latest experiment!


  1. Heartbreaking! Poor Miriam. I know it will take you longer to recover from this than it will take Isaac!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Grass is grass, no matter what side of the fence it's on

Moving, and moving on

Finite Disappointment