Oh summer latchkey. I have a love-hate relationship with you. Yes, I love that you hours of operation fit so nicely into my work schedule and allows me not to worry about if I’m going to make it on time to pick Leo up. And yes, you have a lavish array of field trips (daily) that the kiddos get to go on. But Leo? He is not a fan. He does not like going in the mornings. Once we come get him in the afternoon he has had a fun time. But the mornings? They are a bear. And in the past week I have two incidents that stick out that make me feel for him a little more. And it shows me how horrible/stupid some kids can be.
Let me preface this by saying that my child is no angel. That he never does anything wrong. But I’m not sure that either of these situations would be warranted regardless.
1) About a week ago Leo told us that some kid put a rock in his ear. I looked at him kind of funny but asked some questions. Who was it? (He didn’t know his name) Was he the same age? (No, he was older) Was the rock still in his ear? (Yep, he said it was still there). Did it hurt? (Nope) Well, I kind of looked in his ear and didn’t see anything. I asked him if he was serious and he said yes. I just kind of let it go because I didn’t really know if he was telling the truth or if it really had happened. Also, I figured rocks probably wouldn’t stay in your ear. Especially when they swim two times a week and he showers almost daily. But then on Monday or Tuesday morning we were cuddling in bed and he says, “hey, the rock just came out of my ear.” And he proceeds to hand me a tiny little rock. That was living in his ear. So strange. Thankfully he never complained of a headache and/or ear pain or else I would have felt like a total jerk for overlooking the situation. Next time I will definitely be more vigilant but who does that? What kind of kid puts rocks in other kids ears?
2) Tuesday evening I run in to pick up Leo from latchkey. I am supposed to grab a card with his name on it so he can be released. But there is no card. So I ask and a teacher walks up and has this weird look on her face. Then she proceeds to tell me that some kid flushed Leo’s shoe in the urinal. His brand new shoes. I had to be taken to a separate room because I was being “too loud”. But seriously?! Again, what kind of kid does that? I asked Leo what happened and he said he was in the bathroom stall changing after swimming and his shoes were towards the front of the stall and apparently some kid (who was his age this time) grabbed one of his shoes and put it in the urinal and flushed. I felt so bad for him because he told me he walked out and could “clearly see his shoe in the urinal.” Poor kid. Thankfully they came back from swimming around 4:30 so he didn’t have to be shoeless for too long. I’m not sure how much trouble this kid did or didn’t get into but I think it would be necessary to have a teacher in the restroom while Kindergarten age kids are changing. I made sure that if the stank of a urinal wouldn’t come out of his shoes I would be reimbursed by the other parents to be able to get him new, clean shoes and went home and washed the suckers out. The next day I put them in the sun to see if the heat would bring out any stink and they didn’t so I deemed them fit to wear again but I made sure Leo knew to keep a close eye on his stuff.
So after those incidents I can see how he might not always want to go and so I’m trying to be more understanding and compassionate. On the other hand, there are only 3 more weeks left of summer latchkey before a 2-week break before school starts. Thankfully we have family who is willing to watch him during that time otherwise our vacation time from work would be stuck during that time. So I guess between now and next summer I will have a task to decide if we want to stick with summer latchkey for another year or so or try to find a willing teenager who would want to watch Leo for 10 hours a day for 12 weeks. It could be a daunting task to find someone up for that challenge!!