This week on Monday, Little Ham refused to get out of the car to go to school. Like... refused. We were in the drop-off zone and he wouldn't budge. It was a new one for me, so I dug deep for a way to handle it. I said this foolishness: "If you won't go to school, then there must be a big problem so we are going to sit here in the driveway and talk about your feelings all day 'till we get to the bottom of it."
And so we sat. We watched all the other parents drop off their kids and saw the buses zoom by until we were all alone. And we sat some more. 45 minutes ticked by.
Finally Little Ham started talking. And talking. and talking. He emptied his poor heart to me, and I felt for the first time that we were connecting as parent and child. He said he is feeling overwhelmed by the new school, and that he is worried every minute of the day that Hamslice is stealing his Pokemon cards, and and and...
So we devised a plan where we would get him a safe for his room with a combination that only he knows. I also promised to talk to the school administration RIGHT AWAY to make sure they are helping him. We also talked about locks for bedroom doors and other things we can do to solve some of these problems.
That very day Hambone went and bought safes for both kids. I marched right into the school as well and relayed this most urgent request.
The immediate action made an impression on Little Ham. And now he talks to me about lots of other things instead of just asking for hugs and kisses all the time. We are ... connecting.