Went to pick the little girl up from school and as usual, I tried to go in full "stealth" mode. Sometimes I am able to walk in without her seeing me, that allows the opportunity to observe her being her "school" self. Today, as I waked in, she was at the head of the table surrounded by her classmates in their respective seats. They were playing while waiting for a birthday party to begin. Her teacher walked over, looking worn from a day of three and four year old ( and my only two) incredibly smart, precocious children. "Can you hang out for a minute, Mom, we are about to sing Happy Birthday"! At that point my daughter sees me, runs over and turns immediately into Mommy's Girl. After guiding her back to her seat and telling her that she is to stay with her classmates I stepped out of (her) sight and go back to my semi-covert observation stance.
As the methodical chaos of children stirring about, teachers setting up cupcakes and organizing for song, the birthday boy's mother and grandmother are snapping pictures and smiling. I watch my daughter interact with a two young ladies in her class. I witness one girl say something mean to my daughter and the other co-sign with her friend. My daughter comes over to me and says, "they don't want me to play with them". I say to her, "go back and tell them you want to play with them and if they say no then move on to your other friend". She complies and the girls don't want her to play. My child goes over to her other friend and she is more amenable. My heart is broken! In her previous school we never had an issue with friends. It seemed like she was adored by teachers, students, the administration.... I stood there watching my daughter navigate between the "mean girls" and a friend in the midst of so much going on that no one saw what was going on except, her mother.
In that moment, I realized that my child is truly a person that I can only protect to a point. She is learning more than numbers, words and sentences. Hell in the month she has been at this school she has gone from baby to little girl and really its for me to keep up. Everyday, I drop her off and her day is filled with great moments, learning moments, accomplishing moments and mean kid moments. Now that I have seen first hand, its my duty to prepare her as best I can. No this isn't bullying, its a little girl learning socialization skills and frankly some of those lessons are painful. It just so happened that on this day I witnessed her growth process outside of what she gets at home. It hurt like hell, I almost cried in the school, who could want to be mean to my daughter her very name means "happiness".
People will be mean to her for no reason or many reason, but that child, my child, is protected on more levels than anyone could ever understand. So I am clear that with God's Grace and a little bit of Bed Stuy prep schooling, she will continue to be an amazing person and learn how to deal with the meanies. Always remember when you are cultivating amazing, mediocrity will have its jealous foot stuck out there to try to trip you. Not happening with my girl!
Peace and Be Easy