Yesterday was M’s end of term school trip – I know there are still 4 weeks until the end of term but yesterday was the day they chose for their outing.
We had a note home about a month ago asking for payment towards the bus, if your child wanted to go. M wasn’t sure if he wanted to go. A new place is always scary for him, but to be going with the comfort of his family made him decide he didn’t want to go. I decided not to put the form back to say he wasnt going as we would talk about the experience the day out would give to him.
They were going to be going to The Brechin Castle Country Park, a short drive from here. I decided the first thing to help his decision was to look up the website of the park. Unfortunately their website doesn’t really sell the place, and made it sound as if there was nothing of any interest there. So this didn’t help light his excitement. I decided the best course of action was not to mention it for a few days. The problem was , I then forgot about it, that is until M came home and said his teacher had asked for the form back asap! I then got a very indignant “yes” from him when I asked if he wanted to go. I am sure talking to his class mates had aided his decision, but it was one he had to reach by himeself because if I had pushed the issue he’d have dug his heals in.
As the day approached M got more and more agitated, while being excited at the same time. At every opportunity he told us he was going on his trip, and how many days it was until he went. M often does this when he is approaching an event. I am sure it is his way of getting it straight in his own head.
They could wear what they liked as long as they had a school jumper on, but M’s mind couldn’t deal with no uniform, so wore his uniform all the same. I did try to get him into jeans or joggers, but he just wasnt having any of it. He took his packed lunch, juice bottle, and sunscreen, and was ready to go. He was filled with nervous excitement.
Several times during the day I wondered how he was getting on, but as there were no frantic phone calls – which we have had on other school trips, I assumed he was having fun. The weather was glorious, so as long as he remembered to wear his hat and reapply his sunscreen he would be fine.
They were back for the usual end of school time. He appeared with his teacher, which isn’t usually a good sign. She did however say he had had a really good day and had joined in nicely with the activities.
He was quite quiet, probably tired after the adventure of the day, but he did say they had gone on a train, and the teacher had joined them on the bouncy bubbles! I am sure he will open up more about the goings on over the weekend, once he has thought about it, processed it, and decided if we need to know about it.
As the evening progressed he got more and more agitated. He was very rude and angry with everyone and everything. The day had obviously taken the toll on him physically and mentally. When bedtime arrived it was a relief to us all. He was grumpy but soon settled. It didn’t of course last long, as within an hour he was screaming the house down with night terrors. He screamed constantly for a full hour. We managed to get some Calpol into him, and he soon settled for the night – well until the back of 4am anyway!
I’m glad he went, as experiencing new things with different people is such an important lesson in life. It is something you can not teach you just have to experience. The aftermath might not have been the nicest, but it was worth it.