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First day of school

I got the kids up at what they felt was the crack of “what the heck are we doing awake” o’clock. They grumbled, they moaned, Nathaniel stuck his head under the pillow and burrowed down in the blanket…but they did all get up, get dressed and on the road on time. Nathaniel actually said "Mom, we could have slept for like 15 more minutes, you know"…THAT is my child. At school, it was exciting to see all the kids rambling around the hallways and the sad mom and child separations. I actually felt this little bit of guilt that I didn’t feel bad that I was leaving them….however, I felt this wonderful bubbling of sheer glee. Yes, I stood amongst the moms sobbing because their kids were clinging to them and watched my kids take off without a backwards glance and didn’t let the door hit me on the back on the way out.

Peyton had clinic, but it was far enough away for her to whine her way to a plate of scrambled eggs….which she didn’t eat. She was so hungry, but as soon as I sat the food in front of her she claimed a boo boo tummy and wouldn’t take a bite. There was a little boy in the restaurant, maybe 18 months to 2 years old-ish, and he kept saying “Look at the baby!” After about the 4th “Look at the baby”, I turned to see this baby….there was no baby. In fact, the kid was pointing at Peyton. If I hadn’t turned, she probably wouldn’t have thought twice about it. But I did and she realized that the boy was talking about her. She was TICKED! Face turn red, breathing hard and eyes narrowing mad…staple that kid’s nose to the floor mad…”I am NOT a baby!”

I had to explain that he was little and thought that because she didn’t have any hair she was a baby. We went through the whole thing about bald babies, and how he WAS a baby and didn’t realize the difference. It made her sad, which was worse than being mad. I guess I thought we’d get through this without her really being bothered by the lack of hair, but this really tweaked her.

She had her finger poke at the clinic and her counts were decent. Her ANC is at 800 (fair), her hemoglobin is 9 (so-so), and her platelets are 200K (that’s good), so we don’t have to back for two weeks! Maintenance rocks. We had a nice time visiting with Nikki Hawkins and her mom and I realized how much we miss seeing our friends from the clinic….how bizarre is that? I miss the clinic. But we’ve made friends there, and for all that she’s had to endure there, she’s very happy when she spends time with the wonderful people we’ve spent so much of our last year with. Tonight she took her 5 pills of Methotrexate and her nightly 6MP like a champ. When we go back in two weeks she’ll get her port accessed and her monthly dose of Vincristine and we do our 5 day pulse of steroids. But that’s two weeks away and we’re going to just enjoy the next 14 days.

Now, to add to Peyton’s emotional matters WAY worse, when we went to pick up the kids from school there was a little girl at the school who drove Peyton’s day straight into the ground. She ran up behind Peyton and started patting her on the head. I grabbed her hand and put it down by her side and said “She doesn’t like it when you touch her head like that.” So the kid stuck her face about a quarter inch from Peyton’s and made a face at her. Peyton buried her face in my lap, I was about to pick up this kid and drop kick her across the parking lot. THEN the kid says “Is that a sister or a boy?”….which in itself is a cute question. But with her pink shirt, her overall dress, her pink socks and pink ballerina shoes….it should have been somewhat obvious. After having dealt with “Look at the baby” boy, she was not going to deal with the questioning of her gender.

“I am a Peyton! I am a sister!”

Oh she was about to come out swinging. I am not for yelling at other people’s kids…well, I guess not strangers’ kids….but I know her mom and I was tempted to tear this kid a new one. But she’s 6. And she completely oblivious to the emotional trauma she’s causing Peyton, whereas I’m sure I’d feel more than a twinge of guilt for raking a 6 year old over the coals. I simply pulled Peyton into my lap and let her bury her face in my shoulder…she was so close to crying and I was just praying that the kid would GO AWAY.

Luckily, Nathaniel and Rachael arrived and we made a quick escape. I took them for ice cream, but mostly to try to cheer her up. She bounced back from it, but at prayers tonight, she prayed that “I am not a baby or a boy. I look like Peyton.” I don’t know that she worded it right, but I know God got the gist of it and I pray that her little feelings are back to new tomorrow. We go to the Children’s Cancer Center tomorrow, where she’ll get to play with her friends and spend time with kids who don’t blink twice at her little shiny head.

Now I’m starting to wonder if I should talk to the school about talking to the younger classes, especially the little ones who don’t know Peyton and talk about her and let the parents know what’s going on. I mean, she’s not actually a student, but I don’t want her teased and she’ll be there every day when I drop off the older two. Obviously she’s not as unaware of the comments as I’d hoped.

This day hurt a bit. I just pray that the Lord provides the comfort for Peyton’s bruised spirit and the patience for me not to react when I know she’s been hurt.

I just want to thank Karalynn for the sweet t-shirt for Peyton, they kids all loved their gifts, but when I told her that it said “Someone who loves you..” on it, she immediately put it on and wore it the rest of the night. It could not have come at a better time. She needed that extra little bit of love today.

I also want to thank Brenda, a wonderful lady who provided gym bags with treats and gift cards for the kids to purchase school supplies.

What an army of blessing-givers we have and we are so thankful for all of them.

f.r.o.G…fully relying on God

9 Comments on “First day of school”

  1. #1 sharon
    on Aug 20th, 2007 at 9:29 pm

    Peyont's head is the most gorgeous one! She is precious and you are, obviously, an awesome Mom!
    My sweet little 2 year old came in my office when I was reading your post and he was waving like mad at Peyton's picture. He was quite smitten by her. She is beautiful.

  2. #2 Kim Dubin
    on Aug 20th, 2007 at 9:41 pm

    Oh man… I have the urge to come for a visit from Oklahoma to help you do those evil things to that girl! I am embarrassed for the parents for not teaching their kids better than that! I miss seeing you guys but I am very glad you & Penny have become such good friends! Take care Anissa & Mayhew clan!!!
    Love ~ The Dubins

  3. #3 Karalyn
    on Aug 21st, 2007 at 12:06 am

    It makes my heart hurt that someone made Peyton sad. I wish everyone would realize how important it is to teach our children compassion.Peyton, I think you are the prettiest,most beautiful little girl in the world. Love,Karalyn

  4. #4 Aunt Angela
    on Aug 21st, 2007 at 7:40 am

    Dear Peyton,
    Aunt Angela and Uncle Tom think you are so beautiful and sweet. We are so sorry that those two kids made you feel sad. They obviously need to look closer and remember the rule not to say things to hurt others. Remember one was a toddler and they still need to grow up and learn and the other girl, well her parents need to keep teaching her manners. Everyone can see you are a buautiful little girl.

    Oh, you handled that so good. I would have spoken to that little girl and still might over Thanksgiving break if she does it again. I remember when Elaine had her birthmark and how peoples comments could hurt so much. She of course was to little to blink an eye at comments, but they really hurt the parents. I think you should have the teachers talk about Peyton at the first chance they get. Take her poster picture and let it be an "update and praise from over ther summer" They they can take time to pray for her in class. That is the great thing about private school, prayer is allowed. Think about it.

    Love all of you…. Take care and enjoy being home more and a much quieter house!! 🙂

  5. #5 dug
    on Aug 21st, 2007 at 9:17 am

    bald is beautiful

    why do people think its ok to walk up to a child they dont know and rub their bald head? strangers dont come up an rub my head and i am bald why is appropriate for complete starnger to put their germy nasty hands on a child with a compromised immune system? if you feel the need to rub a bald head shave your own and rub it. only other bald headed people are allowed to rub mine.

    there is an episode of Happy Days where the gang has to take care of this group of bratty kids. In the end The Fonz has a group of rough and tumble houdlum kids come in to straighten out the brats.

    thanks for the vent

  6. #6 Penny Hawkins
    on Aug 21st, 2007 at 10:52 pm

    When I read this – I just had to share…. Yesterday when picking up Jared from his after school program, I heard a little boy tell another little boy – IS THAT A GIRL OR A BOY? The funny thing is a third little boy walked up and said NO – it is Jared's sister. So apparently being a sister does not necessarily classify you as a GIRL or a BOY! WHO KNEW????? Nik did not hear and I am happy with that. Nik had on so much lip gloss – who would have even had to question it? Not to mention a dangle earing or TWO. Love ya, Penny

  7. #7 Angela Garcia
    on Aug 22nd, 2007 at 10:27 am

    I think that she is BEAUTIFUL!!!! I am praying for TOTAL healing in Jesus Name!!!!!

  8. #8 basi
    on Aug 22nd, 2007 at 8:37 pm

    I'm sorry about how those kids made Peyton feel today. 3 going on 4 is a very interesting age. Kate is starting to understand so much more now, too. It's just one of those things that you pray will make them stronger. But it's awful and it would have messed up my day, too. It hurts us as their parents, b/c we know all they go through and how brave they are. (Kate may be joining the baldies on this new protocol.)

    Peyton, you're so pretty and fierce! You're no baby. Everybody knows that you're a brave princess.

    take care, love, basi

  9. #9 Julie V.
    on Aug 22nd, 2007 at 9:01 pm

    Dear Anissa,

    I'll never forget the time some elementary boys came up to the back of my friend and neighbors back yard and were talking with my children. I went back there to see what they were talking about and one of the little boys chuckled and made a rude comment about Joshua being bald. I felt like a Bear protecting her baby cub. I tried to keep calm and polite and explained to the boy that Joshua has cancer and he is going through treatment. That it's not nice to make fun of other people. His face turned so serious and he got quiet. It's difficult enough to protect our children in this dangerous world, but then when we have a child going through a medical issue we are on heightened alert!!!!

    I hope school is going well for Nathaniel and Rachael. Emma starts school tomorrow and she's so excited. I'm not excited about getting out of the house by 7:30 a.m. with all 3 children.

    We will have to have you all come out to GKTW when we are in Florida at the end of October. We would love to meet your family. I feel like I know you so well already. It's been a blessing getting to know your family over cyberspace.

    Take care.