First up, Belgium. What kind of a gift should I request from said country? Not chocolate (I don't really like chocolate. I think my distaste for Cathy comics put me off the stuff.). This gift will be the first hubby-travel gift in two years, and will follow a looong stretch of single-parentdom on my part, so it can be good.
Next, school auctions. They usually serve alcohol there, ya? I have one coming up, I will be alone (the above-referenced hub travel), I will have a babysitter, and I will need a drink or two. Think I need to bring a flask? (Joking. Kinda.)
At the end of February, I was ten minutes late picking up Huckle from preschool. It was a traffic problem, I didn't have my cell, whatever, I was late and I apologized and was embarassed and everything. Huck had wet his pants through, and I was informed that he'd been in wet clothes for hours (there was a spare set of clothes and pullups there, but the teacher's aide didn't find them or didn't look or whatever). The director of the school pulled me aside as I was trying to walk Huck toward the front door, she blocked my path, started talking about how my lateness and Huck's wetness was unacceptable. I told her three times that I was sorry, that he had pants there, but that we really needed to leave. She said, "No, we need to sit down and talk about the problems you are having." Right about then, Huck wiggled out of my grip (I was worried about hurting his wrist, I loosened up because he was struggling and trying to get away, he was wired and worked up and wanted to run), ran past the director, out the hall door, up the ramp, opened the front door (I heard the bell chime), and took off into the parking lot. Still, director won't let me past her -- I was in panic mode as soon as he took off, she didn't notice anything out of the ordinary, like my child running away from me. (By the way, Huck ran past three teachers/school staff to get out the front door, no one stopped him.) So I run out the hallway door, up the ramp, out the front door, and see Huck in the middle of the parking lot, doing the crazy 3 year old run and jump and scream thing, and even though there aren't any cars moving in the lot, and even though the road the school is on is about 100 feet away and not too busy, I am still freaked. the. fuck. out. because I know Huckle well enough to know that the only way I'll be able to get him is to actually chase him down and catch him -- he's in his head, he probably wouldn't even hear me, so all the screaming of his name and the "Come back!"s aren't getting through, and goddamn can this kid dodge and duck and oh holy crap here comes a minivan. So by the time Huck falls down and I catch him, I'm sobbing from fear and relief and general exhaustion (I went to school exhausted already). I pick him up and say, "You cannot run away from me, you just cannot, you have to be safe," through my tears, but by that time he's totally disassociated. He's got the "Huckle has left his body" thing working, as we refer to it around here. So I stand there holding him and rocking him, in the middle of the parking lot, and I whisper to him that he's okay, Mommy has him.
That part sucked a lot, it really did, I was scared and angry. But the kid running away happens to everyone, and I don't beat myself up over that, mostly because my little brother spent 5 years pulling the same sort of stuff on all of us, starting with the time he could walk and continuing each time his feet hit the floor.
Anyhow, once I was holding Huckle, school director makes another appearance. She proceeded to yell at Huckle, telling him how naughty running away was, demanding that he apologize to me, and when he didn't respond (still staring the thousand-yard stare), she said, "Wow, he is totally disrespecting you. You don't have any control over him at all. He never behaves this way here at school. You really have a lot of work to do to be any kind of a parent. He doesn't have an respect for you at all. How do you think you can even keep him safe?"
So. Ten minutes later, I knew exactly what I should have said to her. At the time, I mumbled, "Well, he has a lot of anger and mistrust for his mother, and it comes to me now." Then I said goodbye to School Director Cunt, put Huckle in his carseat, and drove three blocks down from school and had a bit of a meltdown on a side street.
Why didn't I just tell her to shove her disciplining of Huck and the observations that followed right up her ass? I'm still pissed at myself five weeks later.
I do know why. She scared the shit out of me. She knows that Huckle is my foster son. She could initiate an investigation. She could tell people that I can't keep him safe because he doesn't respond to me. Huck's resistance to me (and his happy feet) is well-documented with the professionals involved in his case. If there was even the slightest chance that my telling her to go fuck herself would result in Huckle leaving our home, I was going to keep my mouth shut.
I'm still hating her on the inside, though. I have a daydream about unloading on her after finalization. When it happened, Hubs and I discussed removing him from the school then, but I was worried that another change would hurt his (fledgling) sense of stability, even though at that time he was still crying every school day and begging not to have to go.
I do think I'll enroll him in another preschool next year, though. Every time I see SDC now I want to slap her face, and knowing that Huckle would be in her class next year is too much for me to handle. (I wouldn't actualy slap her face, but the wanting to is bad enough.)
So I know this whole story presents me as a crappy mom, but I do think she was way out of line. Am I alone in feeling that way?
PS: continued in comments