Friday, October 5, 2012


Yesterday Pink and I had a solid plan to get her back to school for even a short time.  I could see obvious signs of anxiety after being home sick for so long.  The departure time kept getting moved back further and further until we were past even the latest goal of 12:30.  All morning I was upbeat, "Positive thoughts!", encouraging, baby steps, but when it came down to actually going out the door she was doubled over thinking she was going to vomit. 

I pushed again.  I was determined to get at least one toe in that building yesterday!  She just needed to get shoved past that evil anxiety wall.  As much as I explained the anxiety that was happening she could not get past the wall.  I started to get really defeated and scared.  I didn't know what to say or what to do!  She was just crying as I was telling her she HAD to get her shoes on but she would not budge off the couch.  Pink doesn't cry.  It didn't help that she saw me get the phone numbers to the counselors I was referred to.  I was desperate.  Was I supposed to carry her? It was awful! 

For a second I gave up and said she could go back to her room to rest.  But I couldn't give up.  I wouldn't give up.  I joined her in her room and sat on her bed.  I looked at her and my eyes welled up.  I looked away to gather myself and said out loud "I'm scared."  She saw me crying and hugged me.  gulp

"I'm scared for you.  I'm afraid you are getting stuck and I feel a darkness around the corner.  I think you are afraid to go to school and have so much attention on you after being gone so long.  I think you may be afraid of not feeling well while sitting in class.  I think that the makeup work may seem overwhelming.  I might be way off but I think that is what is happening now." 

Pink was quietly crying, "I don't want any attention on me.  What would I say?"  heart cracking

Me: "I know you can do this.  It will be hard for only a couple minutes and then it will be no problem.  Today we will go in together after school and just talk to the teachers.  Just to get into the building.  We'll wait until all the kids have filed out and just you and me will go in.  I'll do the talking.  We'll only talk for one or two minutes with each teacher.  This is important."

Pink = bravery

She agreed.  I got her in the car.  We went and waited in the parking lot until all the kids were out.  Pink was quiet and stoic.  A good sign.  This means she is in her get-it-done mode.  As soon as we walked into the hall where the teachers were gathered they stop what they are doing and came right up to her exclaiming how they've missed her and asking how she is.  I held my breath but Pink pulled it off.  They barely mentioned any work, just supported her.  One teacher even waved her hand in the air "Don't worry about any of that work!"  Bless them.

Pink was great and as we walked out of the building we both were so much lighter.  I was so relieved!!  She was relieved.  She even said "I think I can go now if I need to go in late." 

I went on and on how proud I was of her.  What a great job!  Very brave!  You might say "Not so much" but I know exactly how she feels because I'm just like that.  Attention and social events give me anxiety.  Almost every day I have that same conflict in my head but being an adult I've built skills to deal with it.  Poor thing is just starting.  

I feel like I bumbled this really badly.  Somehow I could have made it easier for her.  I just don't know.  There was resistance today, almost backsliding but I could see that she knew she had to do it.  I give her all the credit.  And right now she is at school!