Monkey’s first week in Year Two has generally been ok. I’ve mentioned before that he has the same teacher in the same classroom. It’s made so much difference. Save us a whole term of anguish. He obviously doesn’t want to do the homework (how can anyone not want to do a family tree!!!), he won’t join in with the Roald Dahl dress up day tomorrow (school photos were yesterday), even taking a golden ticket in, is dressing up apparently. But generally, it’s a case of so far, so good. Getting back into Beavers was always going to be trickier.
Monkey loves routine, as you know, he’s incredibly shy, and doesn’t take to change well. He’s not outgoing in any way, shape or form. He started Beavers just after Easter and once he’d got used it, he was enjoying it and letting me go quite easily. He was proud to be a Beaver and I think it’s such a great thing for him to do. He has no interest in playing football, or any other sport, but he needs to do something, and Beavers is a good fit for him I think. But getting back into Beavers and back into that routine was going to be a challenge. They finished on 11th July and only went back this Monday. That’s a lifetime for a 6 year old, who likes his routine. It’s forever. Add in that Beavers is only once a week, and I was concerned that this week would be like starting all over again. It’s a 6pm start, so he’s had that time home after school, to eat and play and chill. Getting him to then get changed and leave home again. It’s a challenge. This week was hard, he was keen to get into his uniform, he decided he would prefer to just wear his polo shirt with his necker.
Getting him to leave the house. Not so easy. We had tears. In the end Biff had to come with us. I don’t want anyone to be mean to Monkey. A nearly 7 year bringing a teddy to Beavers, I’d hate any to tease him. So I suggested that Biff might like to go in my handbag to keep him safe, and then I’d bring him with me to pick Monkey up.
Biff is a Sorgenfresser Worry Eater and we’ve had him a few years now. I bought him to help Monkey express himself and to help with his speech. Monkey adores him, and Biff is a constant companion. He sits on the bottom step waiting for Monkey to get home from school, cuddles Monkey to sleep at night, and is a frequent flyer. He is a timid boys best friend.
We got to Beavers, and as expected Monkey was a little anxious and didn’t want to leave my side. He wasn’t even going to talk to Penguin when she came to see how his holidays had gone. But as soon as roll call was announced he asked to say a sneaking goodbye to Biff and he was off. All was well.
Fast forward an hour and it’s pick up time. Biff came with me of course. Monkey came out looking rather sheepish. I was a little concerned he’d not enjoyed himself, had I been that awful pushy Mummy. Oh god. But no, Mummy I’ve had fun, I’ve just missed Biff. Did you bring him? Of course, and with that, he pulled Biff out of my bag and hugged him tight all the way home.
That’s all he needed, his special friend. Getting back into the whole school routine takes its toll. He always gets incredibly tired, even though he’s generally a good sleeper. Getting back into Beavers and the later night might take him a bit of time, and if we need to have Biff with us, to help him through it, then that’s what we’ll do, and that’s ok.
I’m incredibly proud of Monkey for going back to be honest, I did wonder if he’d refuse point-blank. Missing something for a week or two for half term is long enough for him, a whole summer plus a couple of weeks, is really hard. But week one is done.