This morning Aiden and his classmates moved on to the 3's class. Last week they "transitioned," meaning that they spent the mornings in their soon-to-be classroom and with their soon-to-be teachers. All weekend I'd been preparing him for the BIG move with lots of exciting talks about his new classroom and new teachers.
What I didn't tell him was that his best friend (let's just call him Smith) would not be in that class with him.
Because there were two 2's classes and two 3's classes, the school splits the classes up whenever they move on to another level. So half of his classmates are going to be in his class (along with half of the children from the other 2's class) and half of the children are going to the other 3's class. Smith is going to the other 3's class.
For some reason as we were on our way to preschool this morning, Aiden asked if Smith was going to be in his class. And I had to be the bearer of bad news and tell him no.
When we got to his preschool, he cried for Smith to be in his class, he cried to go back to his old classroom with his old teachers, and he cried because he didn't want to wear the school's t-shirt. That I could deal with.
But when I was going to leave him, he cried for me not to leave. It wasn't like a whining cry either. It was like one of those silent cries where the tears just flow down his sad-looking face. I could tell that he was trying to be a really brave "big boy" by not whining or throwing a tantrum.
In situations like this, it has always worked best for us when our "good-byes" are swift and to the point. So when it was time for me to leave, I reassured him that he would have fun in this new class, pointed out some of his new and old friends, said "I love you and have a great day," and gave him a huge hug and kiss. Then out the door I went!
But the look on his face. Ouch! It just breaks my heart.
I know that it's perfectly normal and developmentally appropriate for him to cry for me as I leave, but it sure makes me feel extremely guilty.
Since I don't have class today (Summer Session B has not begun yet), I am going to pick him up a couple hours earlier. Maybe we'll go out for some frozen yogurt or something.
I think we both deserve the treat.