Monday morning after half term. I didn’t feel ready at all. I’d spent the entire first week being a hermit. I didn’t venture out of my house very much, unless I needed more milk and bread. I slept in until 10:30am and washed many, many clothes that weren’t deemed essential washing items, over the past 6 weeks.
Only on the weekend before school started again, did I drive farther than tescos to visit my parents and friends to reassure them that I was alive, still. Netflix and I had re-established our relationship and I had binged on soppy rom coms and the amazing American TV series Stranger Things for seven whole days. Sunday arrived and I dug out the laptop to check over plans for the next week and make sure my resources were all in many a teacher’s favourite font. I decided to utilise the extra hour of sleep on being productive for once this week. Better late than never.
So Monday morning rolled around. I completed the register and welcomed the children back to school. Apparently they had missed me more than I had missed them. His lordship hadn’t arrived yet and we were walking to assembly when I quite possibly jinxed myself by saying, we could be in for a super day. The children lined up in the assembly hall before sitting on top of each other, as they always so predictably do. I heard him before I even saw him. He had been in the sensory room during the register and was now marching through the hall, towards the classroom. I put on my forced ‘I’m so happy to see you again’ smile as his 1:1 led him to the classroom to settle him back into the routine.
Predicting how this ‘super’ day was now going to turn out, especially since he had arrived without his glasses, again. I began mentally preparing myself for a horrendous first morning back. Unfortunately, I am not psychic and couldn’t predict what would happen next, luckily I was still going to have this ‘super’ day I dreamed of. He spent 15-20 minutes in the loo because he wasn’t feeling very well. Not only was he not feeling very well, but he also had heavy bags under his eyes, no glasses and the ‘Danny Zuko’ bounce about him, that he usually has when he’s going to be/is having a bad day.
“Oh no! What a shame! I’m going to have to call your Mum to take you home. You’re far too ill to be in school today.” I said. Sarcasm emanating from every syllable in the sentence. I tried to hide my excitement and joy at knowing he would be going hom after only 30 minutes in school. I tried so hard to maintain my professionalism, however, I have a very honest face and I’m not good at hiding my emotions of sheer happiness or utter disappointment.
I phoned the SENCo for a second opinion and she agreed that he needed to go home too. He was obviously too poorly to stay in school. We phoned Mum and I collected the children from assembly, I explained why I was the last teacher to collect my class with a squeak of excitement in my voice. Today was truly going to be a super day.
Fast forward 7 days and he has returned on a more promising footing. Glasses and all. He managed all through Maths with only a slit outburst when the numbers got too hard for him so he just wrote “I give up,” on his white board. He had a minor slip at the end of playtime which resulted in the SENCo following him around the playground for a while before he incurred a 2 minute detention. (Which he happily reminded me of and attended more than 2 minutes without any fuss.)
Unfortunately, he had missed watching me make rocky road in front of the class, whilst he was calming down in sensory, which almost resulted in a more dramatic moment. Especially when I said that we needed to put it in the fridge to cool for 2 hours. His eyes glared at the clock to see what the time would be in 2 hours time. Realising that he wouldn’t be here to eat it, panic set in and he began to flap. I said I would save him a slice and give him the recipe so he could possibly make it at home with Mummy, at a time when he would not be in school or his alternative education setting. His eyes lit up again as he declared he’d be able to eat so much more of it, if he made it at home! If.
I’ve demanded to see photos of him sharing his rocky road at home with his Mum and little brother. We’ll see what happens in 2 days time, when he’s back again. Will he have a slice of rocky road for his favourite teacher? Maybe, maybe not.