It May Be a Little Gym But It Causes Big Stress
Today was the very last Mommy & Me tumbling class for my son and me.
For nine months now, we’ve been going once a week (therapies permitting) to our local Little Gym for a very cute little kid tumbling class. Before I go any further, I have to say that the folks over there have been great. They are very understanding about my kid, and they aren’t the least bit phased if my kid (or anyone else’s) wants to spend all of class playing endless games of Follow the Leader or amusing himself on the mat while they are teaching everyone else a skill.
In two weeks he’ll start their preschool class, and the new instructor is not intimidated at all about all of our warnings. Today wasn’t our last class because of dissatisfaction but merely because he’s gotten to old for it.
And now I have mixed feelings about the whole thing.
On the one hand, I’m going to miss running around with him in the gym, playing Follow the Leader with him on the equipment. I will miss cute things like watching him “play his drums” (bang on the mat) or do little tricks. I’ll miss the high fives and hugs.
However, the forty-five minutes we spent there were the most stressful forty-five minutes of my whole week. My son has trouble waiting in line and would push other kids out of the way. He would hit kids if he got mad at them. He might throw a tantrum if he couldn’t get what he wanted (mainly push his way to the front of a line). And although it’s been less of an issue these last few months since his social skills have vastly improved, I still would need to hover nearby in case his play got too aggressive and the other kid couldn’t get him to understand that he needed to stop.
All of this isn’t that bad by itself since none of it is unusual for his behavior. What was tiresome were the other parents who glared when he tantrumed (as if their own children didn’t occasionally melt down in public), the actual, visible sighs of disappointment some of them would give when we walked into the room, that type of thing. More so than in any other setting did I feel judged for my kid’s behavior and disabilities. In no other situation do strangers ask me what is wrong with my kid — I assume this is because my signing to him is more apparent in this setting, and therefore people assume something is wrong — and then ask me what I’m doing about it.
And this isn’t just in my head. My husband took my son to one class, found it so bad and embarrassing that he refused to ever go back.
So, this aspect of the class I will not miss at all. And that leads me to realize that although I loved how much my son loved the class, my overall feeling about this having been are last one is merely a sigh of relief.