A couple of weeks ago Tate came home with a cute flier in his backpack. “Please join us for Kindergarten Field Day and Mother’s Day Picnic”. Below the header was a paragraph that rambled about having fun with your kindergartener, eating lunch on a blanket, and so on.
I felt a familiar pit in my stomach. You know,the one that forms when your heart wants one thing, and your head knows another. Special time with my kiddo…but a day that is non-routine, with 40 other kindergarteners, some relay games, in a gym with weird lighting…yeeshh.
Even though I figured it would be rough, I sent in our RSVP. His teacher prepped him. I prepped him. We discussed it and the teacher showed the class pictures from last year. We did our part.
I arrived a few minutes early. As I entered the gym, I saw a mom whose son is in Tate’s class. We sat and chatted. We talked to a few other moms. Many of the children who started the Early Childhood program with Tate are moving on to mainstream classrooms. It is bittersweet. Tate will still be in self-contained first grade, but I know that is the best option for him right now.
The children filtered into the gym. Tate came in and waved to me! I was pleasantly surprised. I was even more surprised when he actively participated in the activities. My son, the boy with sensory processing disorder, was handling and coping with the chaos in the gym.
He did the scooter races–on his tummy! He of the vestibular disregulation was able to stay oriented and finish his race. He also did races with one foot in a shoe box, and a potato sack race!! Was this my kid?!
He smiled for pictures. He said hi to his “friends'” moms. He sat and had lunch with me in the gym..on the floor…in the harsh lights. He conversed–in his way.
I texted Hubz. Our kid, who 6 months ago would have melted down during this much activity, due to overstimulation, did it! With a few accommodations, planning, and following his lead, our Tater Tot successfully participated with mainstream kindergarteners for 2 hours.
It truly was a field day…and I don’t need anything else for Mother’s Day…I got my gift in seeing Tate enjoy a social event and being able to hold it together. His progress gave me the gift of hope today…and I couldn’t ask for anything more.