On Saturday, Auntie and I did our weekly shopping at the Holy Mecca, the Target Superstore. Hubs had business errands to run, so I took Connor with us. He likes going to Target on Saturdays, because that is the day the sample ladies are there.
While shopping, he said to me, out of nowhere, “I’m never going to have a girlfriend.”
This was perplexing for a couple of reasons. First, I thought he already had several “girlfriends”, and the other reason is, of course, that he is only going into the first grade.
“I thought you already had girlfriends”, I asked.
“No. Nobody wants to be my girlfriend.”
Ouch. Sad face.
Of course I told him that he’s still young and there’s plenty of time ahead for girlfriends. He became quickly distracted by the sample lady handing out macaroni and cheese samples, giving my obsessive thoughts time to ramp up.
Although he’s quite high functioning, I wondered if he was having a hard time “mixing” with the other kids. I worried that he stood out, that he wasn’t accepted. I worried that he KNEW he wasn’t being accepted, and was feeling “different.” That would hurt me to the core, and it’s one of the things I worry about most.
I started thinking about how to explain to him that he doesn’t have to be just like everybody else, that it’s okay to be unique. How to convey that what everyone else thinks isn’t important, it’s being true to yourself? But then, that’s not true, is it? Without friends, and at least some peer acceptance, getting through the next 12 years of school would be unbearable.
Macaroni and cheese isn’t known as a comfort food for nothing. I stepped forward to get my sample. I needed the warm, cheesy goodness to soothe over these fresh thoughts.
12 more years of school. I wonder if it will take a bigger toll on me or him?
Somehow, I’m going to have to summon the will to make nice with some of the snotty NT stay-at-home moms, and find a “friend” for Connor. It will feel just like swallowing glass, I’m sure, but if it helps him to forge peer relationships, I guess I’ll have to take one for the team.
First grade is shaping up to be a tough year.