Posts tagged " preschool "

On the Road Ahead

September 7th, 2016 Posted by Tabula Rasa No Comment yet

A year ago, I pulled the door of my son’s preschool shut and my eyes swelled with tears of fear and pride. His first day, his first time alone. Today, I slammed that green, iron door behind me, and if it had not been raining, or if my husband hadn’t been with me, I would have torn off my clothes and run around the block screaming Aretha Franklin’s “Freedom.” Instead I drove through morning traffic, serenely, road-rage free.

Back home, I first sat on that toilet for ever, for reason other than that nobody appreciates alone time there than mothers of young children. Then I roamed the house, didn’t make the beds, didn’t do laundry, didn’t even wash the morning milk bottle. By 10.30 I thought a day had gone by, so I went to the supermarket and bought myself food, smirking at the women with toddlers in their carts demanding candy at the register.

Evil, I know.

By 2pm, my living room had turned into a jock’s paradise; an on-going brainless TV marathon, plates of half-eaten food, feet on the table, house clothes.

Pick up is an hour later this year, so by the time I got to school, I missed him more than I do when I leave for days. He didn’t run into my arms as he did every single day last year. He grabbed me by the hand and begged to stay a little longer, he wasn’t done making angels out of play dough. He’d eaten all his food, had no bathroom accidents, which still haunt me from the sudden forced potty training of last September, he wasn’t tired because it wasn’t nap time, he was simply happy. As was I. Our kids our exclusively ours for such a short period of time if you look at the grander picture.

I have a feeling that this year I will finally be human again. Not the me I was before this now three-year-old came into my life, I’m not striving for that, for I am so much more, thanks to him. But it seems like I will finally find out what else I can add on.

On Scary Places

March 22nd, 2016 Posted by Tabula Rasa No Comment yet

My son’s best friend at preschool bit him. Twice. There is a tooth mark of blood underneath the skin where his bicep will show one day. She cried after being scolded, he stroked her cheek and said “don’t cry.”

Preschools are scary places, jungles where manners, empathy, and kindness are mostly concepts of the future. Kids are mean, we all know that, we all have our heap of terrible stories to recite from our past. I know I do. But suddenly I find myself back in that scary place, only it’s worse, because I realize that I have to relive over a decade of it through my son’s eyes.

Before bed tonight, he told me that he (of course) doesn’t want to go to school again, because he doesn’t have any friends. He described who plays with whom, assuming that there is no room for him, that all friends are taken, how after lunch instead of playing with his best friend he played alone. I stupidly told him a story about how when mommy was small, a girl pulled her hair on the bus and made her cry, but after that the two became lifelong friends. He put his teddy to his face and began to cry. I told him that sometimes good people do bad things, that things like this will happen, but to think of all the good things that occur instead.

How do you explain a three-year-old that the world can be a scary place? That not everyone is nice? That kids hit, push, bite, steal, lie? That adults do too. Maybe by only by concentrating on the positive; telling him about love, compassion, beauty, knowledge, laughter, stories, adventures, flowers, trees, the sky, the sea, the wind, reminding him how happy he was when he brought me a flower this afternoon, how warm he is right now, under the covers, mommy next to him, how happy he’ll be to see daddy’s face next to him in the morning. And then, hope that the good in his life, outnumbers the bad.

Pieces: a novel

“Pieces” is the winner of the silver medal at the 2017 Independent Publishers Awards (IPPY), and a finalist at the USA Best Book Awards and International Book Awards.

When Clouds Embrace: a children's book

All proceeds from the sales of "When Clouds Embrace" will go to Giving for Greece, a foundation that works to help the hundreds of unaccompanied refugee minors in Greece.