May 27, 2007

A tough start to the long weekend

The plan was to leave for the beach after dropping Mini Red at her dance at 7pm. Her Dad would pick her up after the dance since it's his weekend to have her.

The plan got all turned around when I got a teary call from Mini Red around noon. A former friend of hers created a Mini Red hate list and had kids sign it. Mini Red knew of the list and was told many kids were bullied into signing it. The list was found by one of the adults and the initiator and the names on the list were in trouble. What really upset Mini Red wasn’t that all the kids were begging her to get their names off the list so they wouldn’t be punished but that some of her friends admitted to willingly signing it. She broke down and my heart still breaks writing this. I didn’t care about anything but getting to her and taking her out of that place. I said, “Tell them I’m coming to get you!”

I booked it out of work and called her Dad as I was running to the car. He was heading to the school to support Mini Red. Then I called my Mom and she was all fired up. She said “Tell Mini Red to skip her Dad’s this weekend and come to the beach cause I want to hug her big and spoil her”.

I got to the school and I wasn’t worried about anything more than hugging Mini Red and protecting her. I talked with a counselor briefly but Mini Red wanted to get out of there. By the time she got her stuff from her locker and we were in the parking lot her Dad showed and she got more hugs.

After all this there was no way she was going to the dance so we headed home to gather her things so she could leave with her Dad. I mentioned several times about coming to the beach but she wanted to go to her Dad’s. I was disappointed but hopefully her Dad will give her some tips on how to handle these situations in the future because he can be sarcastically mean and conniving. To watch her leave with him is always difficult even after all these years but after all that had happened it was even more difficult this time.

So I headed to the beach much earlier than expected. The drive wasn’t too bad and traffic only tacked on about another thirty minutes to the three hour drive. Once I arrived my family was all huggy after the day’s events and when Mom, Sis and I were talking about it we all got a little verclempt. Mom is disappointed Mini Red didn’t come to the beach but we agreed it’s a good sign she wanted to go to her Dad’s. Mom is fired up and wants to make sure the school does something about this situation. She's ready to go into the school and get in their face if necessary but suggested I call SIL to get her take on it since she’s a teacher.

SIL gave some great info. As I had suspected I can’t know the punishment of these kids or if they will be suspended from the field trip next week. I can however go with a different angle and for any of you with kids this is great advice. SIL said to contact the school and explain that as Mini Red and I are discussing what has transpired that there are consequences for actions. Mini Red needs to also be aware of this so she doesn’t make the same mistake. What are the consequences determined by the school district for such actions? Plus tell them that I need to let Mini Red know that the school will protect her. I also plan on pointing out that this is bullying and this should bring alarm to the school that a child could behave in such a manner to rally many kids against one.

SIL says it’s all how you pose the question and to not be afraid to ask the policies and what the school will do. She says the school will cater to the parent that asks questions.

The school counselor told me they tried to have the two girls sit down and talk but Mini Red was too upset. They plan on trying this again on Tuesday but I don’t see the point. Maybe if they were in Elementary school but what this girl has done is irreversible and there is no way they can’t be friends at this point. This proposed meeting could be uncomfortable for Mini Red and what would the bully do other than be nice to try to avoid any punishment. I refuse to have Mini Red in this situation and I don’t feel it’s in her best interest.

Friday was just exhausting and I feel empty since Mini Red isn’t with me. I think I could just hug her for three days straight. I’m leaving the beach Sunday to get her so we can have Monday together. Our plan is to catch the new Pirates movie at the Uptown and she is excited about the plans for her weekend.