The Phantom Pain

I make the usual trip to school, walking past the various groups and see the usual faces as I walk, waiting outside the school gates which holds the reception class. Awaiting the grand opening of the gates which allows the parents to enter the school yard, now this is a little fun to watch. Watching all the parents pile in eager to grab their children and leave, this seems to be getting a little aggressive amongst some parents. A little pushing and shoving to be the first ones in to grab their children.

As I wait for for most of the crowds to disperse, I get a little hand gesture from the reception teachers to come forth. Uh oh, I think… The mentalist has probably done something, as I walk and weave past the various parents my mind tries to come to some conclusion on what she may have done? Has her eccentric nature become a little too much? Has she said or done something to call my parenting into question?

I walk into class, I see the mental one sitting on the carpet. A grin spreading across her innocent face, I’ve seen this look before and recall the various times I’ve seen such a grin after she’s done something she shouldn’t have. So at this stage I know shes done something unruly.

Eager to know of her transgressions i quickly get the pleasantries out the way, I get asked whether the mentalist has been to the dentist lately? I respond with ‘yes quite recently?’ Apparently she’s been complaining about her teeth hurting…? I assure the teacher that the mentalist had had her teeth checked, I ask when exactly she’s complained about her teeth… ‘During lunch times’ was the response. ‘Ah!’ I exclaim, as the pieces start falling into place. I tell the teacher I will get to the bottom of the problem, as we skip to the car I begin to question her about lunch and what she’s eaten. I’m met by a shrug of the shoulders, hmm I think.. I ask whether her teeth are hurting and she says no she’s fine and can she have some chocolate ?

At this stage I pass this off as a one off incident, well up until the next day. Where I go through the same thing with the teacher, the mentalist is still refusing to eat due to her teeth hurting. After a couple of days the teacher takes her out the dining hall to eat in the classroom during lunch times, now in the classroom she seems to be eating perfectly fine the teacher putting it down to the noise in the dining hall. I’m not convinced…

So I make her favourite meal of fish cakes and coleslaw and sit with her asking about her friends and her days at school, we touch on a lot of things, with a few musical interludes. Until finally we get to the truth, the reason she’s been how she is. There’s been a dinner lady at school who’s told her off for not finishing her lunch, I can’t seem to get out of her whether this has happened on a regular basis. And I’m sure it’s not been said with any malice or for the need to cause upset (well I hope not). So I’ve relayed this back to the teacher, who has taken the mentalist under her wing during lunchtimes to ensure she’s eating, and eating in the dinner hall with the rest of the children.

So.. For me this begs the question, should i have caught this sooner? Am I spending enough time with my kids?

God I hope so.. There’s only so much peppa pig one can watch!

This is Mr J signing out


The Phantom Pain