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See this little girl…

I love her madly. But sometimes she makes me cry.

Like yesterday, when we visited her new kindergarten. It was just a chance to see the classrooms, do a little art and meet the teachers. Except Dylan must have heard, “Walk over burning coals with your bare feet and then never have chocolate icing again” because there was NO WAY she was going in.

I had to drag her into the car kicking and screaming.  The kind of kicking and screaming where you look around, afraid someone will think you are abusing your child.

Once we got to the school, she wouldn’t budge from the minivan. Like her, I also love the pimped out minivan ride, but she couldn’t stay in there all day.

Her adorable friend Tyler came out with his mom to try to lure her into the building.

A very nice woman from the school office gave it a try too.

And a Kindergarten teacher.

Dylan was not swayed by this parade of loving people.

By that time, I had started crying. Because I hate seeing my daughter so scared and upset. And I was so crazy frustrated. Everyone told me to come back another day. But I knew another day would be just like this one, except Dylan would be even more anxious.

I had to come up with a way to get her in that building.  She was unimpressed with my offers of extra TV, a trip to the toy store or ice cream. I even threw in a college education as a reward for her bravery. The answer was still no.

I dug deep into my parental resources.

“Honey, I have to go to the bathroom. Really badly. And I can’t leave you in the car. So will you please come with me to the bathroom?”

She must have some kind of compassion for my small bladder or the general plight of pregnant women because she reluctantly agreed.

After the bathroom, I convinced her to look at some of the art work on the walls. And ever so slowly, we inched our way toward the kindergarten rooms. By the time we got there, the visitation was over but she did peek her head into one of the classrooms to see some real duck eggs in an incubator.

It was a very good start. Next week we are supposed to return for a placement screening to figure out the best teacher and class for her.  In my family, this is code for “We’re going back to show Summer those awesome duck eggs.”

If there is any good karma in the world, those eggs will have hatched into adorable soft baby ducklings.

Happy Mother’s Day to all you amazing mamas out there.

33 Responses to today i am grateful for duck eggs

  • Cathy says:

    i feel your pain–my son has anxiety attacks, and I worry about him transitioning from his small preschool to 650-student elementary for kindergarten.

  • Laurie says:

    Our daughter seems to be pretty fearless about new situations, a blessing since she’s an only child and has to do pretty much everything solo. Recently we took her to Nature Camp, a camp she loves going to, but hadn’t been to recently. She paused in the doorway and must have noticed that she didn’t recognize anyone. I heard her start talking to herself, “OK…Raley, there are lots of new kids here today…but you can do this.” And, then she just walked in. Besides being a little concerned that she talks to herself, and in the 3rd person, I was also trying not to cry. That moment has served as a reminder to me about how brave kids have to be… and I try to remember it when the inevitable new experience fear does occur. Life is scary if you’re 6 or 60. 🙂

  • Krista says:

    You did a great job! You got her to take one small step– and then another and then another. That’s what parenting is all about. Don’t be discouraged if she takes a few steps backwards… she’ll graduate eventually!

  • Emily Keenan says:

    Lovely Dylan. Lovely Mama. You girls both fill me up w sweetness. BTW, my mom had to deal w my kindergarten teacher asking her I’d I could talk…. After 4 months of having been in her class. My poor mama. She is as great a mama as you, kelce!

  • traci says:

    my girlfriend just took her 5 year old in for K’garten evaluation, for the ‘drawing’ assessment Trey drew a beautifully colorful picture, when asked what it was he said:

    “It’s my daddy in the shower!”

  • From the sounds of things I would also love your pimped-out minivan. The thought of the 42 inch plasma screen, leather sofas, blinged-out rappers and massive spoiler just sends me into dreamland.

  • Megan says:

    Happy Mother’s Day to a wonderful, kind, sweet mama! I’ve taught K children who had very similar initial reactions, but they all came to LOVE school. It might just take a little time. xoxo

  • Betsy says:

    I am crossing my fingers for the ducklings. They are still building our school. No chance for a preview until the week before.

  • Diane says:

    “It’s all about the marketing” is my mothering mantra. Learned that piece of wisdom nearly 12 years ago. Happy Mother’s Day back at ya to you and your faithful followers. You are an inspiration to us all!

  • Slow Panic says:

    Dylan reminds me of my oldest. Every new situation was so hard for him at that age — still can be, but it’s gotten better. But we struggled with things that seemed so easy for others.

  • Valerie says:

    You are a brilliant Mama, Kelcey! I’m sorry that it was so stressful for both of you, but glad for your progress. They don’t call ’em baby steps for nothin! Happy Mother’s Day to you!!

  • Michelle says:

    Kelcey, I LOVE this story! It made me a little teary for some reason. One day she’s going to be kicking and screeming about coming home from college for Thanksgiving. Kindergatren already?!

  • I feel for you. Sometimes it seems like that is 75 percent of my day…slowly convincing Oliver to do things that for some inexplicable reason cause him anxiety. Whoever came up with the idea of team sports for anyone under the age of seven should steer clear of me right now…

  • Julia says:

    This story really hits home! And my kid isn’t even in kindergarten…we’re still convincing him to get into preschool. But seeing how difficult that is some days, I decided to enlist some back-up before we even go on kindergarten visiting days. Thinking about the ERB and the gifted and talented test and the whole kindergarten shopping scene in NYC makes me want to kick and scream. It’s completely overwhelming. SO, we got a tutor to help us prep for the tests. After asking around, we went with Private School Edge…Our tutor came over and did drills and worksheets with our son. She was so patient and creative! I definitely saw a difference in my son’s approach to school, and in my own anxiety. Worth it!

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kelcey kintner