Thursday, September 30, 2010

Apparently I need to keep my neurosis to myself

When Miss A started kindergarten (2003) she was a incredibly shy. I was ultra worried about her ability to mesh with the other kids and because she did not know anyone in her class I really wanted her to make some cute little friends. Every day after school I would quiz her on who she played with at recess and every day she would give the the exact same answer in her cute scratchy little voice:

"I played with just myself"

My most sweet and beautiful little baby was playing all by herself! I was broken-hearted and haunted by memories of middle school when I felt left out.

One day after school (after two weeks of asking her who she played with at recess and grilling her on social strategies) she burst into tears when I began my line of questioning.

I ached for her - poor little thing - brought to tears by her solitary play at recess...

I told her that it was okay because everyone feels lonely sometimes...

Which is when she said: "It's not lonely at school. Lonely is when you are ALL ALONE. There are lots of kids at recess all the time."

So why was she crying?

Apparently because she was so worried about making ME sad when I vicariously stressed out over the kindergarten social scene.

Lesson learned - and before long Miss A had a cute little friend who lived up the street (and we were 20-somethings living in California at the time so by 'street' I mean row of town houses).

Now that Miss A is 12 she is actually experiencing the real social drama of being in middle school. And guess what?

I am still powerless to do anything.

And all that post-traumatic-middle school-drama is back in full swing.

All I can do is be there for her and give some oh-so-helpful social strategies which are met by theatrical eye-rolls and expressive sighs.

Let me just impart this bit of wisdom that my years of experience and knowledge have helped me to understand:

1. girls are mean
2. boys are dumb

Man, I miss kindergarten!