Saturday, October 22, 2011

Don't Be Nervous

That was the pep talk I was giving myself as I took Jack to his first girl/boy birthday party. The party was for a fellow classmate, and most of the party guests were from Jack's school.  That was good, it's what we want. But as I was driving Jack there, my stomach was tense with knots.

Jack kept up a steady chatter; who was going to be there, what the movie was going to be, who he was going to invite to his birthday in March. As we were getting closer I gave him a few last minute tips on how to behave in society.

"Remember to cover your mouth when you cough"
"Wash your hands after you use the bathroom"
"Don't forget to CLOSE the bathroom door, remember we aren't at home!"

As we pulled up to the house and parked, I took one more deep breath before getting out of the car. As we walked to house, holding hands, I gave him one more bit of advice.

"Try not to suck your thumb. I know it's hard, but maybe not at the party."

We walked into utter chaos. The boys that were there were wrestling and yelling "George Washington!", the girls were just standing around staring. Jack looked in the room and then stepped back.

"I'm scared" he said. As the only parent there, I tried to figure out how to gently nudge him into the room, but not traumatize him.  He saw his friends from school but was still too overwhelmed to go into the room. I stood there with him in the hallway, frantically trying to think of what would help.  Luckily, the mom hosting the party announced it was piƱata time and everyone headed upstairs. I walked behind the group, still there if Jack needed me, but trying to stretch the umbilical cord, just a little.

Once upstairs, I got a quick "I love you", before he was running outside with the rest of them.  As I walked away, he was on the peripheral of the group. Still not quite sure how to join in, but ready to take a chance.

Don't be nervous, I thought as I left. He will be fine, he will have fun, and he will make friends.  I know that to be true, but I still feel the need for a stiff drink.

1 comment:

thismummaslife said...

What a well written post. You made me feel your anxiety right along with you. I know when my son is old enough for milestones like these I will be a nervous mess.