I'm not sure if I should be worried about my growing antisocial tendencies or not. When Will was in Kindergarten, I was all over trying to make conversation with parents and tried my best to make friends with all the moms and dads as we waited for the bell to ring and our little 4 and 5 year olds to file into class. I wanted to know all the kids' names and all the parents' names and I even hoped that one or two of the moms would become actual friends that I could go out for coffee with or something.
Fast forward 4 years and I find myself a completely different person. I still try to smile and be friendly and if I already know someone, I may chat with them, but now if I can avoid a conversation, I do. And once the bell rings, instead of walking slowly out of the school and making comments to other moms, it's all I can do not to run out of there. In fact, just today, I walked out of the school at the same time as a mom who walks the same way as me and I immediately walked faster, just so I wouldn't have to talk to her.
I get that it's uncool, and really out of character for me... but that's what it is.
It leaves me wondering why I want to avoid other very sweet, friendly moms. And why I am making next to no effort to learn their kids' names.
Perhaps I'm jealous of those other moms who's little darlings can talk up a blue streak and develop at an enviably normal rate. I don't think so, but there may be an element of that in it. I mean, after all, I do find some of the conversations I hear irritating. They seem shallow and silly, but really who am I to judge?
Or maybe it's because I continue to age and the other moms come in all young and fresh to the school experience. Is it just me, or do the other moms that have kids in older grades tend to be less talkative too?
I'm leaning towards thinking, however, that school now represents a stressful place for me. When Will was in Kindergarten, I was blissfully unaware of what school would throw at us. Ya, sure Finleigh was tube fed and increasingly falling behind her developmental milestones, but that was as far as it went. In the time that she should have begun walking and saying her first words, she was still cuddled up in the baby carrier, unable to hold up her head - but that had nothing to do with school.
Then things started changing... Will was recognized as gifted with a little bit of need in the social department. Then he started having a lot of difficulty in class. Then they started taking him to the sensory room. Then he was tested as probable Aspergers Syndrome and is awaiting an appointment with a developmental pediatrician to confirm. Nate, though clever and well behaved in school is mildly/moderately delayed both physically and in his speech. Finleigh, well, Finleigh has a full-time aid, still isn't talking, acts more like a 2 year old than a 3 1/2 year old and makes sure than everybody is watching us all the time - whether due to how cute she is or little compared to the other kids or her negative (and loud) behaviour.
School seems to serve as the place where we discover all that is wrong with my children. It really is a lot of fun.
(Do we detect a bit of self pity here? Perhaps. I am working on that.)
But now, instead of enjoying the picking up and dropping off of my school kids as one of the only social times in my day, I find myself looking forward to that day when I can send my kids to school on their own.
We've been blaming Will's antisocial tendencies on Brian's genetics since he really isn't that into spending time with people, but I'm beginning to wonder if a piece of it doesn't just come from me too.