There you are, Dad!
I can see you in the sea of mummies and daddies at school pick up.
You are waiting outside my kindergarten classroom with the rocket ship on the door, and I am peeping at you through the window.
I am so excited to see you! I am bouncing like I need to wee because I can see you waving at me. As soon as my teacher opens this door, I will charge at you for a cuddle.
Yippee! Here I come!
It’s you. And it’s us again. Us.
I love you so much, Dad. You and mummy are my everything.
But as pumped as I am to see you, and I am, there are some things you should know about why I am the way I am after school pick up.
Firstly, I’m so hungry.
I know I’ve eaten everything you packed for me in my crunch and sip, recess and lunch boxes. And yes, that squeezie yoghurt you untwisted the cap off, because you knew I’d have trouble, was so YUM, but I am hungry again.
When I get home I will go on a pantry rampage, trying to find something, anything that will fill my little rumbling tummy.
So yes, if you bring me a banana I’ll munch on that in the car, but I may want something else too when we get home.
I don’t know why I am hungrier than usual now that I am a big school kid. Maybe it’s because all the learning I am doing is making my brain think it needs more food?
Today I learnt that ‘cat’ rhymes with ‘hat’ and ‘sat’ and also the letters that make up these words. And then I had to try and remember these just by looking at them over and over. I played snap with these words with my new little buddies too, and guess what? I won! But I probably won’t tell you this.
I don’t want to talk
Mum, (because on other days it’s you who does the pick up and then on others again I get to go to after-school care which is fun!), when you clutch my little hand in yours and ask me how school was, who I played with and if I liked the honey sandwich you made me, I might go silent on you.
Yes, I heard you, but I am distracted by all the noise of the playground right now. Kids are running everywhere like ants.
Then when we get in the quiet car I know you’ll ask me again. But please don’t. I don’t feel like talking.
It’s the last thing I feel like doing. I’ve had to do that all day. I even put up my hand and answered all the questions. But I don’t have to now. Because it’s you and I can just be me with you. I know you understand.
Maybe ask me about the honey sandwich after we get home and eat something? I might feel like talking then. But for now, can you please just drive and I’ll stare out the window?
I need to chill
I know you’ve said I have swimming lessons in an hour but I just feel like zoning out for a bit. School, with all those noisy new friends of mine, is full-on. I love it. It’s so much fun! But it’s all so new.
And I feel a bit overwhelmed.
I am tired. So very tired, so please, can I just watch some Paw Patrol?
I might need to have a cry
When you tell me telly time is over and we need to go to swimming, I might get cross. So cross that I might even cry, because I don’t know why. I feel a bit wobbly after school some days.
So I might just tantrum like I am two again, at you for flicking off the TV.
But if I do cry, I’ll feel better for it. You know I will.
I’m tired, but I can’t sleep
I know you are getting all, “time to go to bed” on me these days because you say I “need my beans for school” but I can’t get to sleep very easily after a day at school.
There are just so many things in my head – like a jumbled find a word – and I’m finding it hard to calm down at night.
Maybe you can lie next to me and cuddle me for a while before I go to sleep?
I know I am a big boy who has started school, but I need your help. The way you soothe me with your soft voice and pats, it makes me sleepy. It always has. So please, for just a little longer as I transition into this new school life, can you baby me some more with the sleep thing?
I am still your little one. I am just growing up and soon I won’t need your help in this way.
So, Mummy and Daddy, this is why I am the way I am after school.
Lots of love,