Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The Curse

It happened. I got the phone call. I have been expecting it: hoping it wouldn't come but this morning, my luck ran out.

On the days that both Beau and Carmella have school I do long runs. I leave my car at the school and run through the neighborhoods and streets near it-- or rather, near enough by car. I always take my cell phone with me but really if I need to be at their school in a hurry it isn't going to happen if I am 10 miles on foot from their school. This is where I would throw myself on the mercy of my mother-in-law or my mother. Both helpful people but not necessarily fast in an emergency either. So I have chosen to be optimistic and assume nothing is going to happen while I am out running and the kids are at school.

This is a fine theory when it comes to Carmella. Totally realistic to expect all will be fine the few hours she is at school. She is a polite and sweet child and just doesn't have issues with anyone. She is good. Beau on the otherhand. . .

Well, pretty much since he started school I knew a phone call to get him would come someday. I have other Mommy friends at the school with boys. This is how I knew it could happen. If I just had Carmella I would never know such a phone call existed. Lately though, I have begun to relax about it since Beau was no longer hitting or pushing or throttling his classmates. In fact, Beau has not been in time out since the end of October.

However, it seems as though Beau has gotten bored with being compliant and is back to his terrible-two ways. I have been suffering through this at home and counting my blessings that he was still being gold at school. I definitely pick my battles with him. The cape is one of them. I allow him to wear it everywhere except bath and bed. They are even fine with him wearing it at school. And for this I am grateful as it is one less battle I have to wage with him.

The cape, to be honest is not really an issue for me; that is until it comes time to go outside and put on a coat. At first I thought it was because the coat inhibited the free flowing of the cape. When he runs he likes it to wave behind him. Even at 2 he understands the theatrical effect of a flowing cape--it is just way more superhero than a limp, hanging one (and isn't that true of most things?)

I thought maybe if I pull the cape over the coat it would solve the problem. It still flows. Everyone can still the cape. His superheroness is in no way diminished by the coat. But this doesn't make him happy either. So then I thought maybe he thinks the cape is a coat and therefore another layer is just superfluous. But the cape is made of thin polyester felt. Not warm. Fine for 60 degree weather but not for 30 degree weather. My solution has been to dress him in multiple shirts and sweaters--which he fights me about but I am stronger. I win. As a result of his antics, I have adding dressing Beau as part of my daily workout regime because after wrestling him into clothes I am as exhausted and sweaty as I am after 20 minutes on the treadmill.

Now, I don't expect his teachers to fight this battle. I understood, and was not at all surprised, when they told me that they had to send Beau to the director's office last week while they went on the playground because he refused to wear his coat. Beau was not phased by this as he had a fabulous time chatting with Madam Director and he did not have to wear the coat: coat zero, Beau one. Beau and I had a talk about the coat and everyday I tell him he must wear coat and not to argue with his teacher. I also advised his teachers to use reverse psychology on him as it works fairly well at home for me: "Everyone gets to wear their coats today BUT Beau." I assured them that they would hear, "Me! Me! Please! Oat!." (Having Beau as a child has given me great insight as to how simple the male mind can be.)

Well, either the reverse psychology didn't work today-- and I will be the first to admit that after several weeks he is getting wise to it-- or they didn't try. He tried to explain to his teacher that he had not one but 2 shirts on and his cape and that was enough. They weren't having it and sent him to Madam Director's office.

About five miles into my run I get a call from Madam Director:

Beau wouldn't wear his coat again and they sent him to my office. But he is running from me and I just can't keep chasing him. I have him baricaded behind the counter. Do you think you could come talk to him?

I would have laughed-- had I not been partly out of breath-- at the ridiculous suggestion that my talking to Beau would do anything. I told her I was out for a run and would be there as quickly as could to pick him up.

I was at least 3 miles from the school but less than a 1/4 mile from my mother-in -law's house. But of course, today, she wasn't home. I thought of calling my Mom but figured I could run 3 miles faster than she could get dressed and drive the 8 miles to the school. So I sprinted to the school to get my son who, for only him andGod knows why, won't wear a coat. For me this is the absolute dumbest, most annoying reason for having to take him out of school.

By the time I got there he was back in the classroom and when he saw me he knew instantly it didn't look good for him. I could tell this as he waved suspiciously at me and remained behind the craft table. I apologized to his teachers, took his cape away and explained he could not go back to school or have his cape back until he could agree to wear his coat when he was told to. I really hope I embarrassed the hell out of him in front of his little friends.

He didn't really get that he was going home til I took him out of the classroom and started walking down the hall with him. Then the tantrum began and he managed to get away from me and almost made it back to his classroom. His teacher came out into the hall to witness the scene and I have to say I am really no longer embarrassed by it, just really over it.

When stuff like this happens with him, I feel like I am the one being punished: My run got cut short--and those last 3 miles were not fun(though I guess I could say I got my speedwork in.) Then I had to take one very pissed-off toddler on my errands. Again, not fun for me. Then I had to take him back into the school to pick up Carmella while he had yet another tantrum all the while screaming: "Me! Borry! I ant to owe to hool! Oat! Me wear Oat!" Everyone at that school may not know me or Carmella but they sure all know who Beau is.

Finally he passed out in the car on the way home and is still, thankfully, napping.

This is my mother's curse. You know the one: I hope someday you have a child just like you!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry. It sounds like the going home punishment worked well, though. Good luck on Thurs!