Fair warning, this is more of a vent post. Just need to get some of my negative feelings from the last few days out of my head.
So I’m really struggling with what to do with Caden and his upcoming soccer season. He hasn’t played soccer since 4K, but of his own volition this year, he was really excited about signing up. He insisted he had to be in the same soccer program as one of his best friends. So I figured out which one that was and after asking him about ten times over a couple of weeks (Caden hates outside commitment), he never wavered, so I signed him up.
After signups were done, we got an email with the roster for each grade group. Caden was in the first and second grade group. Because he’s in second grade. BUT, his three friends that played soccer this past fall, were all in the third and fourth grade group. A mom told me it was because in fall the oldest group only had a couple of players, so they moved the second graders up. But it doesn’t make sense that they’re still moved up when the group seems big enough in spring, does it? We talked to Caden about it and he was pretty upset. I was upset too because Caden has not had a lot of good team sports experiences. He never wants to do anything outside of the house – ANYTHING. And soccer he was excited for. Because he could play with his friends. And now they’re in the older group.
After mulling it over for awhile, I decided to ask the lady in charge why a bunch of second graders are in the older group. She responded by what felt like mocking, using “a bunch of second graders,” when really it was only three. Yes, only three, but the three that are in Caden’s class and his friends. She told me they were moved up because of their skill level. She also said I could move Caden up too if I wanted.
So now I’m at an impasse. I believe those kids are definitely more skilled. And Caden hasn’t earned the right to move up. But at the elementary level, should it really matter what skill level they are? I mean, I haven’t seen Caden play soccer, other than the very brief time Shepard decided to play last spring and they needed parents and siblings to fill in, so Caden ran in and did great. Because he was playing with a bunch of 4 and 5 year olds! Is he really good in his own age group? No idea. But I want him to have a good experience for once. I want him to have fun with his friends. But it seems very entitled of me to demand he just be put in the older group, when he doesn’t have a lot of experience actually playing. BUT he would be happier. I don’t know what to do.
Anyway, in case those moms happen to read this, it’s definitely not a dig at your own kids. I’m just frustrated that they choose to move kids around at all. Wouldn’t it make more sense just to keep the kids in with the grade of kids they actually belong to?? Wouldn’t that be the easiest solution? New season, keep second graders with all second graders? I want Caden to have a good time, but I hate that he’s lost all of his enthusiasm before soccer even started, because he’ll be playing in the appropriate age group, but with none of his friends.
Moving on to my other vent. So, facebook and honesty. Can you ever make an honest opinion on facebook without some sort of backlash? Probably not. And sometimes it really sucks. And sometimes I’m just an extremely sensitive person and think about things way more than I should and let them get to me and sit around in my brain for days and weeks, when I probably should have just shrugged it off.
So. Last week the boys had their spring concert. They need to cram SO MANY people into the gym. It doesn’t feel like a good concert viewing situation, but it’s the only one we have. And it sucks because viewing is not great for so many from so many areas of of the gym. And I get that, and hopefully everyone gets that, and you try not to make a huge deal out of it, even when it’s frustrating. Our group of people were frustrated because the curtain was drawn right up the edge of the risers, so nobody to the left of me (our whole group besides Greg) could see Shepard. He was on the end of the top row, and totally blocked out by the curtain.
Meanwhile, Greg and I could have seen Shepard, except the girl in front of him was wearing a bow on her head that was at least six inches tall. The whole situation was disappointing, but also just made us laugh. Because of course there would be a giant hair bow right in front of Shepard’s face! Of course he would be in the back row for whatever bizarre reason when he’s probably one of the shortest kids in his class. Why would it ever work out that we could watch Shepard in a concert? He was sick and missed maybe all but one concert in preschool and 4K. We were so excited he wasn’t sick this time! But we couldn’t see him.
Anyway, I put as a caption to one of my photos on facebook, that maybe moms of girls shouldn’t put giant bows in their daughter’s hair for concerts. It was meant to be sort of a joke. It definitely was NOT meant to be an attack on that girl’s character, which seems to be the way everyone took it. I love that girl – she’s so sweet, kind, polite, and one of Shepard’s best friends. I have absolutely nothing against her, or her parents. But still. If I had put a cowboy hat on Shepard and it blocked your child’s face, you’d maybe be a bit upset too?? I’m not saying that her parents maliciously put that bow on her head trying to make it as big as possible. I’m sure nobody realized it was going to block out the face of the kid behind her. But it did, so I was just mildly disappointed. That’s it. A simple request, as a joke, that bows that big should be given second thought, before worn during a concert.
But people decided to call me out on it, be mad at me for saying what I did. Which in turn upset me probably way more than it should have. It’s all I could think about for a long day. It still bothers me. It just brings back all the times in the past I’ve been upset about something, usually at the injustice or hurt it caused my child. And without fail, somebody always decides to argue with me about it, and tell me I’m not allowed to feel that way. Why not?? I can feel whatever I want to feel, and please don’t tell me otherwise. I can’t stand when people try to invalidate me because whatever I feel isn’t what they think it should be.
Finally, my last little vent of the day: Annie. Oh, Annie. I love that dog, I really do. I love how excited she is to see me, even if I just went outside to get a bag from the car or something. I love how she follows me around all day and seems so content just to be sleeping near me. I love watching how much fun she has at the dog park, which we’ve been trying to go to every day. She’s even been getting a lot better on walks. Now the bigger problem is wanting to stop and sniff every single thing, rather than pulling my arm off. She’s shown much improvement in just a week, so I think it shows a lot of promise for the future. The problem? Leaving her.
I think she has some sort of separation anxiety. Which is definitely running rampant every time I leave her home alone. Which really hasn’t been often. I’ve been taking her as many places as possible with me, trying to get her used to us and our schedule. I also thought that was a good thing to do! Now I’ve been reading about how really I should be leaving her alone a lot, trying to ignore her, not encourage her to follow me from room to room. She needs to learn to be comfortable by herself so she doesn’t freak out when I’m not here. It’s hard to know what I think about that, when it’s my inclination to shower her with affection!
Anyway. I had to run some errands yesterday. I was gone a little less than four hours. There were more things I wanted to do, but I was worried since that’s the longest she’s been alone. It was also only the second time I had her in the kennel. You heard about how the first time went during the egg hunt. Not good. The second time? Even worse! I left her with a non-rawhide, but still extra chewy bone, an antler, her favorite squeaky toy, and favorite stuffed animal. And the flat cushion bed that fits in there perfectly. When I got home it was a total disaster zone. She chewed the edging off of the bottom tray and it was pushed completely out of the cage. She also somehow managed to pull the ENTIRE 3×5 rug that was under the kennel, through the little slats, and chewed it all up. ALL OF IT. Her bed was bunched up in the back and the whole area was soaked. I’m pretty sure it was soaked with spit. And she was going crazy trying to get out when I came in the door.
I couldn’t even believe how much damage she caused. How did she even get the rug in there?! The whole thing just left me devastated. Even with a kennel, I continue to feel chained to the house. Am I ever going to be able to comfortably leave?? I wanted to do a bunch of daytrips with the boys over spring break. I definitely want to do many, many daytrips over the summer with them. Is that all out the window? The one thing I’ve really been looking forward to doing with my real children? It’s so severely disappointing.
I want to hope that it’ll get better. And everyone is being really encouraging about how it will get better. And her behavior is fairly normal. But I’m scared that this is now my life! No more fun shopping days in Madison while the boys are in school. No more weekend special events where we’ll be gone for eight hours at a time. No more really fun bonding times with my kids, exploring around the area this summer. At least I can’t have any of that with peace of mind. Which is important too. I want to fully be able to enjoy leaving my house to do something. Since getting Annie that hasn’t happened. Not at all.
Anyway, that’s my big bundle of negative thoughts swirling around this week. Writing it down helps.