Not Cooper’s. Mine.
We are a few weeks in to Cooper’s first “school year”, albeit only a 2 morning per week preschool. It’s still new to him, and to me.
I have been a little concerned about the less than stellar reports about his behavior that I’ve been getting from his teachers. It seems that on more days than not, when I arrive to pick him up, I get pulled aside to get told about something that little Cooper Jones has done throughout the three long hours of his time there that has warranted a time-out.
In response, I have spoken with my child at great length about the importance of listening to his teachers, acting appropriately in class and not throwing toys at others, among other things. Believe me. We’ve gone over and over it until he now gets a blank look on his face and appears to zone out as soon as I say things like “So, are we going to remember to listen to the teacher today??”
So imagine my horror when I arrive early to school to pick him up today and I’m waiting patiently in the hallway, when one of his two teachers exits the closed-door classroom and makes a beeline for…you guessed it…me. There were numerous other parents and nannies there waiting for kids and I was silently praying that the report wouldn’t be anything too crazy, as I’m sure everyone there would hear it and plan to not invite the crazy Joneses to any future birthday parties until and not before high school graduation.
I smile nicely while she launches in to the usual beginning of our conversations and says “Hi…so, during story time today, Cooper tackled another boy.” I pull Cooper’s response and my eyes glaze over. I want to lunge in to one of the other classrooms and hide behind a stack of blocks, but outwardly I continue to smile and nod. She continues with “I pulled aside Cooper and a few of the other boys who then got involved and asked them to sit out for a moment and calm down, at which time, Cooper approaches me and says in a very sincere voice, “”Ms. B., I am so sorry I tackled that boy.”” My eyes well up. Could this mean he really does listen? She smiles and says “I was so impressed! And not only that, he then went straight to the other boy and apologized, at which time the other boy put his arm around him and said “”I forgive you.””
I am a little embarrassed to admit that I almost cried on the spot. My boy. My wild, crazy, very unique and challenging child does listen, and finally his teachers got a chance to see the sweetness that is the flip side of the child who pushes, throws blocks, takes other kid’s jackets and runs for the hills during a fire drill. Yep…that’s my boy. I can foresee getting more “reports” of a not quite as positive nature as this one, and I will continue to brace myself each time Ms. B. approaches, but today is good. Today is really good. And my child could not be more proud of the “good behavior” stamp that he got on the back of his little hand for the above display. We just finished washing our hands for lunch and he insisted that we not scrub the back of his hand and/or use the towel to dry that particular fist because he must show daddy when he gets home.
Sweet. sweet tiny little hellraiser. That’s my boy.