The hardest part about your 3-year-old son boarding a bus and going to school without you is his crestfallen twin brother left behind. There really is nothing to make right this grievous mistake.
“Why Mommy? School bus Sam? Sam! Go school bus!”
“Sam, how about we color or get out the playdough?”
“See teachers? See John? Go Mommy. Door open!”
Why did this nightmare scenario befall us? Because Sam’s program doesn’t start until after Labor Day. Every morning this week I’ve had to prep him. “Just four more days (three, two, one) and you will get to go to school on the school bus too, buddy!”
“School bus now!”
Who would have thought that having just a singleton for a mere three hours, five days in a row, would be more high maintenance than my regular 24/7 two-fer? He is so distressed about this unexpected turn of events (after all, it was Sam who went to “school” over the last year while John and I filled the time). And I don’t blame him. I hate it when I can’t recognize my routine.
We’ve been to a couple new parks, the library, Target of course, even the toy store — hey, I’ll try a bribe.
“See John? Sam see new teachers?”
When that school bus pulled up, he was yanking me down the drive, so excited to see the big yellow monster chug to a stop and discharge his brother. So happy, in fact, that the only thing he could say was “John!” — the school bus forgotten.
And John. Well. The first day he got on that bus, I waved to him through my sobs, his little face looking at me with — surprise? betrayal? — as they drove away. The second day he cried a little when he got on, as if to say “This again? I think I’d rather stay home.” At the end of his second day, he got off the bus singing. I don’t know what he was singing, but he was happy. All reports indicate that he’s adjusted super well to his new school. And that’s an amazing thing.