THE SCHOOL BLUES

First day at school was a total disaster! Crying, mixed emotions, trauma, and guilt. Maryam never took it so well either: in between vomiting and crying, she was a total wreck. What have I done to my happy-go-lucky 2-year old?

I knew this day was coming but I never prepared as I should have. It was kind of like a bad interview at a company that I reallllly wanted to work at. I’m not sending her back- I’ve made up my mind- I’m keeping my baby!

So now the question is: when do I send her to school? Do I quit my job and stay with her for another year? Certainly the nanny/domestic worker is not going to stimulate her mind as it would be at a play-school but what if I scar her emotionally? I’m sure I will if I force her into something that she is not mature enough to undergo.

Something about this smells kind of nostalgic- the way that I have given up after a bad day. I’m not one to persevere I know that, but where do you draw the line between perseverance and what’s good for Maryam?

I feel like a lost teenager again- so much confusion. It brings back memories of my childhood, when I refused to go to crèche, crying and holding onto any object I could grab whilst my mom dragged me to the lift-club car.  I hated school; I hated primary school, I despised high school, and I kind of lost the whole point of university: that you actually have to learn there! I guess I chose the right career then, being a teacher and all.

Somehow I feel as though the decision to keep Maryam at home has more to do with me than with her. It may be because I remember the feeling of being left at school, as if i was rejected, and then of being rejected by my peers, and being made fun of, having no one to play with besides a family friend, and then even that gets taken away.

I remember the feeling of being claustrophobic in a class full of happy children. Of being a sad lonely girl in the middle of a buoyant playground and of waiting and watching as the hand gets closer and closer to the hour of midday, when my mommy would come get me. But would she forget me today? Would she have something else on her mind? Tragic- would she be alive to come get me? I can still recall these thoughts- maybe they were too sad for a 6-year old to think of, maybe it was normal, I never knew, still don’t.

Thus is it so traumatising to witness Maryam going to school, to see her cry and feel alone in the company of strangers. They say a mother knows. This mother knows not. I do not know what to do or how to make this better for Maryam. I only know how to take it away, and that’s what I’ve done.

I wish I could be a headstrong positive influence for her, the kind of mother that will thrust her into the masterpiece that God intended for her. I need to be that person, but how if I myself am so full of negative thoughts?

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