Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Yesterday started two weeks of standardized testing in Florida. Last year, Princess woke up screaming that the FCAT test forms came to life and were chasing her. The anxiety is still there this year.
Her stress was up last week as they ramped up reviewing and talking about the test. They even had an FCAT pep rally on the hard court. Her anxiety grew each day.
The difference between this year and last year is that she is now able to talk about it. She puts words to the fear and shares it with Hubster and I. She lets us reassure her and remind her of her tools. She's been doing a great job heading out to the garage to jump on the mini trampoline when she feels the anxious energy taking over.
As I look back at my posts from last year's FCAT week, I see that I've changed, too. I was so angry at Princess for disrupting our sleep then. Now I know that she wakes me up because she needs me. She's at a point now where 9 times out of 10, she's okay with some hugs and reassuring words and then she keeps herself busy the rest of the night. (Because once she wakes up, she doesn't go back to sleep.) It also helps that I don't have to go to work outside the home in the morning. So my attitude has changed, but in all honesty, a lot of it is because Princess and my work situation have both changed.
So we've had FCAT stress for a week before the test started. Testing is Monday - Thursday of this week and Tuesday and Wednesday of next week. She ran to me and fell into my arms when I picked her up yesterday afternoon. She said, "I'm so glad you're here. Today was really hard."
Holy cow! If I read of another blogger's child doing that last year I would have been so jealous and thought "there's no way Princess will ever let me in like that". But here we are.
Hubster had a rough day yesterday, too, which I told her about on the way home. She hugged him and told him she was sorry for his bad day as soon as she walked in the door. It was a calm evening. We ate leftovers and she went to bed about half an hour early.
I woke up to tinkle at 1:00 and happily thought how great it's been that she's been sleeping well for almost a week. I just crawled back into bed when she appeared. I totally jinxed it! I desperately wanted her to be able to go back to sleep so she was well rested for testing. I laid with her for an hour. I said soothing words, snuggled her and led her through tapping.
She was awake. Falling asleep again once she wakes up is nearly impossible for her. She put on "Hop" and I went back to bed at 2. She was sweet, anxious and sleepy all at once this morning.
It's going to be a long couple weeks of testing.
In other news, I emailed her brother's case worker yesterday to express my confusion over him calling our home days after I told her (again) that Princess isn't ready for direct contact. She didn't respond to me, but did 'cc me on an email to his caregivers at the boy's home asking them to remove Princess from his call list. So now the little guy (ten years old) isn't going to understand why he was able to call his sister one day and now can't. I responded to the email to let the caregivers know we're open to snail mail or email contact, but they didn't reply.
My sweet girl said, "Goodnight, Mom. You're my best baby." when I tucked her in the other night. She was sleepily repeating me. I told her how adorable I thought it was the next day. This morning she emailed me, "I love you. You're the best baby I ever had."