Trousers

16 Jun

7 a.m. and the bottles of Rosey in my belly basement started to rattle with despair and morbid dread, but I maintained poise and was the epitome of fake inner calmness.

“These trousers are scruffy. I look like an idiot. Everybody is going to laugh at me”.

The brand-new school trousers bought to replace the hole-ridden pair that have been flapping around his ankles for the past few months were scapegoated in this morning’s rather baffling outburst.

Pickle had woken up in a grump. Nothing was going to be right today.

His ever-growing defiance in the face of my often overly dogmatic ideals is becoming a challenge and a half!

It was literally a trouser-duel-at-dawn!!

The shiny new, downtrodden trousers, which were so looking forward to their debut playground outing, were simply cast aside with rude disdain while the tattered and worn pair cackled their victory with their large mouth-like holes.

The trousers were off the hook. Of course, they were. They weren’t going to steal all the glory. This wasn’t about the trousers; this was a Pickle morning. Albeit a more prodigious one!

The trouser rumpus, turned into a breakfast rumpus, turned into a teeth-brushing rumpus. You get the idea!

So after Pickle’s preferred approach of choosing to sit on the top step of the stairs screaming, “I don’t want to go to school. School is boring. I would rather have a punishment than go to school’, and after refusing breakfast, refusing to clean his teeth, refusing to put his shoes on, Gherkin and I hopped gaily into the car, birds tweeting around our heads, with a sullen Pickle dragging his shoeless feet behind us.

As the engine started and we set off down the road, Pickle chirped, “I want to brush my teeth”. Well, rats and blimin’ bastardry!!!

Rightly or wrongly, I ignored his request and drove off to school. Explaining that the time had passed in which he could change that particular behaviour but that he could still put his shoes on as a way of rectifying things. However, his recalcitrant nature re-emerged and again he flatly refused to cooperate.

Outside school, there was no way he was getting out of the car. If I wanted him out of the car, I would have to “get the headteacher”. Oh throw me a challenge, please!

Needless to say he got out of the car – without the need for the headteacher -, still shoeless, but now wailing that I was horrid and mean, and that he hated me. I flashed a sublime rictus grin at the passing mother with her perfectly behaved, merrily skipping children and slowly walked towards the school entrance, shoes in hand.

After a few paces, he called me back. The switch had rocked back for a fleeting moment, he put on his shoes as his watery eyeballs leaked down his cheeks.

Once in school, the fist-clenching, growling and head-thumping began. Sadly, that is how I had to leave him….

…with a cuddle, an ‘I Love You’ and in the capable and patient hands of one of his favourite teaching assistants.

And I was left exhausted and wondering…..who exactly wears the trousers around here?

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5 Responses to “Trousers”

  1. thepuffindiaries June 21, 2015 at 07:57 #

    My heart goes out to you several times over, this is exactly like my youngest and school. It’s heartbreaking and exhausting to deal with the refusals. Does it happen a lot? Is he ok once he’s there? I only ask because, without scaring you to much, ours got increasingly worse until on some days there was no getting him there. I think you did an amazing job of remaining calm and steering him in the right direction, from one who knows how very hard that is. Thanks for sharing on #WASO

    • Clairey June 21, 2015 at 09:32 #

      It used to be all the time when he was around 4/5. Thankfully I have only once had to call in help from a friend. He will often whine and moan (the the extreme obviously) but I’ve always managed to get him out somehow (sometimes with the unintended knowledge of the neighbours). This was a particularly bad day. I have noticed generally his bloody-mindedness is increasingly strong and the triggers increasingly small. He is hypersensitive right now. In some strange way, though, I am pleased he has taken some of his behaviours to school because the teachers can now see that I am not going mad. He used to put on his charming façade all the time there and they just couldn’t understand where I was coming from :). Thanks for commenting, Sarah.

  2. jsackmom June 22, 2015 at 18:50 #

    I can relate to your every word Mama! I’ve gone through this with my kids I’ve been using PECS (picture example cards with my youngest and with my oldest a dry erase board. It helps them both to see what needs to be done each day. And I avoid being the “mean Mommy” because the pictures are telling us what to do. I put myself on their team too, and say we have to do what the pics say because it helps us have a good day. I’ve pulled my hair out of getting my oldest ready for school and then found out the dry erase board is something he can have control over. With my youngest he likes the pictures and putting them up on the board as a to do and has been done list. My kids have sensory disorders so routine is crucial for their security and my sanity. I look forward to reading more of your journey. 😊

    • Clairey June 22, 2015 at 19:13 #

      That is such a great idea. I know my teacher friend does something similar with a child in her class who has ADHD. S/he thrives on routine and surprises can really knock him/her off-kilter. Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing this information. It’s great to get successful strategies from others in similar situations. 🙂

      • jsackmom June 23, 2015 at 00:00 #

        Yes I deal with the ADHD without a diagnosis for my son’s. My oldest internalizes a lot at school so there’s no issue until he’s home. I follow whatever’s tragedies work to give him independence and confidence. My youngest is very rigid to transitions so the PECS are an absolute necessity. I’m glad I can be of some help. I think it’s important that we share what’s helping on our parenting journey. 😊

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