Today was Peyton's first day of preschool here in Saudi. Since she just misses the school cut off date she will be going to an informal preschool in people's houses for this year and next and then she will be in the formal Pre Kindergarten class at the Aramco school. The preschool I chose for her this year is done by an Indian woman and her co-teacher in her home and has 12 kids. They get to do mini field trips throughout the year (the mailroom, the grocery store, clinic, helipad) which I know Peyton will love.
She was really excited leading up to it and kept telling me how she was going to have fun, do show and tell and was looking forward to me leaving....UNTIL we got there! Then it was a giant meltdown!
We got ready, had a nice breakfast, she picked her Pee Wee School backpack from last year as the one she wanted to take with her, got dressed and made sure we had a red accessory for red day and picked her show and tell item which was her red lady bug pillow pet and off we went.
We walked up to school happy as can be, walked it fine and then she saw another kid lose it and so she decided to join in. It was kind of chaotic and I normally would have just left but there was so much going on that I didn't want her to get lost in the shuffle or worse run out after me. I tried showing her things, talking about her day and nothing was working so finally I just kissed her and left and she screamed so loud. I got to the car and started sobbing and just sat in the car outside the preschool until a friend pulled up (who was dropping off her boy) and asked what I was doing. She said she would check on Peyton and let me know how she was doing when she saw me for breakfast later. I made myself leave and when we met up at breakfast the report was that Peyton was doing better.
As much as I worried about Peyton and whether she was settling in, I did LOVE the time I had with just Graham and the ease of one kid. We went to our weekly Saturday breakfast, took Graham to his 6 month check up (more on that tomorrow), went to the grocery store and then went to pick up Peyton.
When I picked her up she was playing with some musical instrument and told me she had fun and cried because she missed me. I had brought her a lollipop as a treat so she was happy about seeing that. We discussed how fun school can be and how I always come back and how we were looking forward to the next day. I hope we are on track for a better start tomorrow but when she went to bed tonight she told me she was "not going to school." We will see what she thinks in the morning!