Friday, April 17, 2009

Follow-Up And Linky Love

I wanted to follow up briefly on my last post. I appreciate all the comments, advice, suggestions, and offers to...burn places down.

I may not have been entirely clear. While it is troubling to me that Bo was choked at school, my issue was never with the boy. He is a little guy, and Bo actually really likes him (despite my efforts to get him to go elsewhere for companionship) and the kid isn't singling out Bo to hurt him. He just doesn't know how to keep his hands to himself and Bo is always right there. The kid doesn't even typically have bad intent---he's just a boy with probably an awful home life and has no idea what kinds of behaviors are completely inappropriate, and what kinds aren't. Bo has never felt bullied or picked on by him. Even when he came home with a bloody nose, he was sad from being hurt, but was pretty much over it by the time he got to me. I can't say I entirely understand Bo's willingness to keep going right back into the lion's den with this kid---but some lessons have to be learned on your own, I guess.

My problem always has been, and remains---the school's inability to deal with any kind of problem, appropriately. They have a very strict policy of "punish now, ask questions...never". And it's not acceptable to me.

The principal called J (after being unable to reach me yesterday because I was getting my hair did and some serious, serious pampering) and J made our position clear and had a relatively normal conversation with the man. J used a word I'd never heard before. I gave J a high five for sounding smart so effortlessly.

Then the principal had to inform J that the poor little kid had just gotten suspended from school. How exactly a school can find justification to suspend a 5 year old, I don't know. But some of you might not share that opinion with me. Bo was involved in the incident (the kid flashed him and another boy and supposedly said something "vulgar") so I am a little concerned that my bringing up this same child's involvement in all of Bo's issues, and then the subsequent flashing, was what got him suspended. I really hope not. My heart breaks a little for that boy, and I sort of have to put it out of my mind, because really---what can I do?

From this, we can learn, the school really does have a zero tolerance policy on flashing.

I tried to get as many details from Bo last night, as far as his involvement in all of it, went. It was as effective as trying to get a donkey to read a sonnet. To be fair, it was an hour past his bedtime, but seriously, he couldn't hold himself upright, he couldn't complete a sentence, and when it seemed like he was about to complete a sentence, he'd stop and ask, "What was your question again?"

I bring this up to tell you something else. I got my hair colored and it's about 52 shades darker than my normal hair color. It's quite a drastic change. This was how my hair looked last night when I tried to get the donkey to recite prose. He was on my lap. Most of the time. We were inches from each other's faces when I was trying to get him to focus. We spent about 15 minutes very close.

This morning he climbed in my bed and snuggled with me for about 45 minutes. He awake, me asleep.

Later I came downstairs and talked to him about getting dressed and finding his library book and what he wanted for breakfast.

And THEN, after all of that, he came downstairs with his clothes on and said, "WOW! What did you do to your hair! It looks TOTALLY different! How did you DO THAT! Avee, look, mom changed her hair like magic."

If I wasn't a veteran at having a completely brilliant, unbelievably dense child---I might not have been able to get past what happened this morning.

The best part? He did not believe me when I listed all the conversations we'd had in the last 12 hours when my hair looked like this already.

But it's okay, cuz you know, I've come to terms with the fact that I'm not the one who knows everything in this relationship.

Okay, nextward.

I've read a couple of posts in the last week that I have loved. So I want to share them with you.

I've realized since becoming a mother, that there are few other "professions" in life that people are more critical of. I don't really understand our need to criticize another's best efforts in parenting. But it's rampant. I'm certainly guilty of it myself, so don't let me lead you to think I'm not. I become considerably less critical/judgmental with each new "adventure" with my own children (poop smeared walls, booger eating, screaming tirades, entire package of Reese's eating, etc).

Emily is the wife of J's best friend. We lived in Texas near each other for a little while so I got to know her a little better---but nothing like the bloggity blogness world to help us get to know each other even better. I love her style, and I have a lot of respect for her as a person, think she's an excellent mother, and I love this post: Dear Soccer Mom

If that's not enough to convince you, this is another one of my favoritest posts ever. It's a bit older, but wooee! It still moves me.

The other is my very good friend Code Yellow Mom who moved to Ukraine about 6 months ago. She's an incredible writer. Always has been since I've known her. Going on 16 years. Her oldest is about 6 months older than Bo, and I find myself often reading about Cal, and mentally preparing for where Bo will be in about 6 months. Given this story, I can only hope we are raising Bo as well as Cal is turning out to be.
It's here.

The end.


Mrs Lemon said...


Mrs Lemon said...

(and thank you Nobody for not moderating your comments like me the scaredy chicken, so that we can all race to be the first commenter)

CYM is awesome! We've been internetty friends for a few years now, and I so wish she lived next door to me.

Julia said...

I so enjoy your posts- you really do write well and have amazing subjects to write about!

You went to the school with something on your mind and the lady you talked to had something else on her mind. Sounds like she just wanted to stand her ground and not give an inch to what you were saying. The school ought to rethink her as their point person for upset parents. Or, next time, just go see the principal directly.

Sorry to hear the other boy was suspended. Like you had mentioned- no telling what his poor home life is like. Sad to see a five year old having problems already.

Too funny about Bo noticing your hair so late! I think they take little mental naps sometimes (but it sounds like Bo was 3/4s asleep already). I'll be talking to my 4yo about something, then out of nowhere, he'll act like he just walked up and has no clue what we were just talking about.

Howertons in Iowa said...

I wanna see the hair - where's the picture?

Or are you just waiting until I have free time and I'll come take one of you? Or not. Geesh- don't look at my words like that, kinda scary. :)

Is it more red? Just wondering since people always ask you where the kids get their red hair from- maybe you went blond and are really going to throw them off.

You really are a great writer and a wonderful mommy. I dream of being like you when I grow up.

NOBODY said...

Mrs. Lemon: Is a scaredy chicken some kind of new cross-breed of REALLY scared? And congratulations on being furst.

Julia: I love your name. Okay, when I read your comment, I first thought by "subjects" you meant topics, content, etc. And I was about to shoot 38 holes through that statement with a good 167 posts to prove that wrong. Then I thought, maybe she's actually referring to my kids as the "subjects" and that would be really mean. So, now I'm curious. Which did you mean?

And I absolutely agree with you on the school rethinking this woman as their point person. But I think in general, she's a smooth talker and that might work with the majority of people. Not with Nobody though. :) (I had little to no success in my last conversation with the principal--it's a long post--you can read it by searching the word "estupido"). Ehh, nice, huh?

Howerton: Thank you, you are very kind. And yes, if you want to see my hair, you have to come over like the rest of the paparazzi who want to see me.

Sarah said...

send me an e-mail of your new hair? I think bo is a sweet boy I wonder when he is 20 years old how he will remember these times

Mycurlyhairdays said...

Love your hair!!! I am a stalker and saw it right after you got home!!
Yeah, Sessa has been ok at school, but honestly, I am a little nervous about Chach. She's got a bit of a temper sometimes.
So I am learning all I can from you, so I don't go off the deep end at them! Been there, done that. It's not pretty and I am working on being pretty!

Klin said...

The little 5 year old got suspended for flashing? I am worried about the little boy.

I still think you need to go to the district about the school's treatment of Bo. They are teaching him that teachers and adults can't be trusted. Is that really the message we want to send children just starting out in this lovely system?

I want to know what word J said. Yes, I'm weird. I want to know if I've heard it before. ;)

Emily said...

I seriously cannot believe how famous I feel! I would be honored if anybody said such nice things about me - but NOBODY!!!! You made my day. my life.

I am so flattered. really. I am.

And about Bo's school: It's such a shame that some of our most incompetent people end up working as personnel in the public school system - by default. Thankfully there are parents like you who can still be the voice of reason.
Sorry you (and Bo) have to deal with that crap!
You handled it masterfully!

Mrs. Organic said...

Again, I'm with Klin. It seems there is no consistency in the application of the discipline policy. Why ever would Bo tell an adult anything there? He just gets in trouble.

I still can't believe there's such a thing as detention for a 5 year old, for Pete's sake.

Code Yellow said...

I can't believe I'm eleventh commenter on a post that you linked me...(hanging my head in shame)...thanks for liking my post. And me. 'Cept now everyone will know that we allow our boys to say f words at our house.

I also can't believe SIXTEEN YEARS. That's like more than half our lives. No, that's like 16 eighteenths of our lives. Man, that's long.

And P.S. I feel bad for all the kids at that school.

And also, pictures of your maroon hair?!?!? Or is it deeply auburn only? And why, when you have the most beautiful hair in the entire world would you color it? I'm just asking.

Tori :) said...

He flashed them? What's vulgar for a 5 yr old? Hmmm....

I got my hair did too except mine is liter. Will we recognize each other if we happen to run into one another?

No Cool Story said...

You gotten your hair did?!?
Sweet! :)

That school worries me. It's kindergarten for Pete's sake. I wonder what their logical levels of punishment for minor infractions are: expulsion is followed by ex-communication immediately followed by death in the electric chair.

I got my hair done too. It's 2 inches shorter. Enjoy.

Suzanne said...

I'm sorry that Bo is having to deal with this kid at school. :( We've been dealing with a boy in the neighborhood doing similar stuff and it's SO frustrating!

It's so hard to not be that fly on the wall with my children all of the time to see what is happening. It must be frustrating for you as well to not be there when these things are going on.

It sounds like Bo's school is just getting worse and worse. Is it possible for him to attend a different one? Good luck!

Anonymous said...

OK...I have to take a different tack here...I could easily be the mom of the other boy. First things first there was a lot of stuff happened @ school that I didnt find out about because the teacher never bothered to notify me until it was waaay past....
secondly, in many of the cases in our case my child was playing in a way that is allowed at home, and was also allowed at the school he went to last year....playing chase, and dinosaur, and swordfights, he didnt intend to hurt anyone but sometimes did accidentally.

when the teacher punished him she told him it was for LYING to her about meaning to hurt the other child....he completely did not understand that because he wasnt lying and didnt mean to hurt anyone.

I do not mean to negate your feelings about the little boy, but there is always more to the story.

example: shortly after seeing alvin and the chipmunks he started holding water in his cheeks to puff them out just he did it at lunch...the lil boy in front of him in line accidentally hit him w/ his elbow and mine both choked and spit some...all the teacher caught was the spit and he got three swats because after she told him 8 times (by her count) that he had to have meant to spit he agreed with her because she wouldnt listen to anything else....

The principal was the one who finally found all this out after he got the swats because he told her when she started asking him questions at my request

Julia said...

"Subjects" were meant to be your cute kids! And your description of trying to get a "donkey to recite a sonnet" was hilarious. I've never heard that one before. My grandfather would always have sayings like that.

I guess I need to have my hair done by reading all the other comments! I have too many grays sneaking in!

Off to take the kids to the dentist this morning-