Saturday, January 17, 2015

Social lives of the small and peniless

Dear reader, do you know what happens when your child becomes part of a classroom?  Social activities blossom as if by magic.  Social activities of which I feel that I have no basis of understanding.  Social activities that are beyond my understanding.

Sleepovers at 5 years old.

Notes sent home in your daughter's folder from a classmate friend's mom saying "Call me!"

The option to sign your child up on what amounts to the "all-social-activities calendar." 

Color me jaw dropped.  I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around this.  So much of my adult life and parenting life comes from a basic recollection of how it was when I was a kid.  And I can't fathom this amount of social-ness for a 5-year old.  Social-ness with kids and their families that I don't know or know well. 

Dear, dear reader...I need help.  A parental intervention, if you will.

Please, fill me in on the standards of parenting a child who has friends.  Educate me on the ways of five-year olds and their social circles.  Explain it all to me, for I feel that I am not ready.  I feel that I am unprepared. 

I don't know how to gracefully tread the social waters of meeting new families and allowing my child to spend time at others' houses without me around.  My intent here is non-judging, but the boy and I have boundaries that we are not comfortable crossing, and those can make for difficult conversations that can easily be misinterpreted, I'm sure. 

I'm giving myself a lot of talkings-to as of late.  My soul is being searched.  And, there's some amount of practicing in front of the mirror about how to say yes.  (Not literally.)

And when in doubt, I find that diverting the kid's attention with the lure of a trip to Chuck E Cheese works well, also.  Now, someone pass me a paper bag, remind me to take deep breaths, and pat my shoulder as you repeat this thought:  It's okay.  You're doing the best that you know how, which is something. 

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