These last few days have been eventful. We had a parent-teacher conference at Morrigan’s school on Wednesday. She’s doing very well, is one of the top students in the class, and will be participating in a small, advanced reading group. She had all A’s and one B–she just missed getting the A in Math. We’ll continue to work with her at home. She wants that A, yo.
I talked to the teacher about Morrigan’s bully problem, the extent of which I was hitherto unaware.
When the kids line up, they always line up in the same order. The boy who lined up behind her was calling her names, telling her she was “nasty”, and hitting and kicking her. He always waits until lunch or at after school club to do it, though, so the teacher had no idea it was happening. I was so angry at the little coward! Morrigan, on the other hand, just wants everyone to be friends, so she wasn’t “telling”. The saddest part was when she told me this:
“But, Mom, he was nice to me the day I wore my SpongeBob shirt.”
“Morrigan, sweetie, you need to listen to me: just because a boy is nice to you one time does not make it OK for him to hit, kick, or belittle you the rest of the time. His behavior is unacceptable. You should never put up with that. You need to tell.”
The whole thing was rather upsetting. It does help to understand why she didn’t like school more. She’s smart and personable and makes friends easily. I couldn’t understand. I knew this kid would give her problems now and again, but I did not know the extent of what was happening.
The good news is that the teacher was responsive. She reiterated that it was OK for Morrigan to “tell”. She made sure Morrigan understood which adults she should go to if it happened at lunch or club. She also moved Morrigan to a different position in line.
When she came home from school yesterday, I asked her, as I always do, “How was your day?”
“It was great!’
“Do you have a new place in line?”
“Yes! Now I line up with C and M!”
“Did anyone try to bully you?”
“No! And E is helping me with subtraction, and I’m helping her with addition!”
She was a very happy little girl, and I am a happy Mom.
Tom took her to school this morning, and she was excited to go. She woke up right away, got ready, and didn’t hang back so much as she usually does. YAY! On the way home, Tom stopped to pick some things up at the store. As he was heading back, he saw a chihuahua lying on the side of the road. He thought it was dead, but then he saw it twitch.
I should tell you that Tom is a great animal lover. I have never known him not to rescue an animal in need. (Once, at Morrigan’s fourth birthday party, he saw a toad fall into the pool. He jumped in, fully clothed, to rescue it before anyone else even knew what had happened.) So I was not terribly surprised when he came home with a small, frightened dog in the push cart.
The dog, an unneutered male, is wearing a harness but no tags. He looks well cared for; his teeth are healthy, nails are trimmed, fur is relatively clean, and he is neither under- nor overfed. He does not appear to have been hit by a car: he has no external injuries. Nonetheless, we took him to a nearby vet to have him scanned for a chip and given a once over by a professional. Sadly, he lacks a chip as well as tags. On the other hand, he does not appear to have any medical issues outside of a little dysplasia in one of his elbows. He was pretty drooly for a chihuahua, but we think that was fear and nervousness more than anything.
We took him back home to keep an eye on him and see if we can find his owner. He got sick shortly after we returned but seems to be feeling better (though still unhappy to find himself in this strange place). He’s very sweet and calm for a chihuahua.
It’s a good thing all this happened while Morrigan is still in school. The girl wants a chihuahua (specifically) so badly. We’ll have to explain that we’re not keeping him, that somewhere he has an owner who is probably very sad and worried about him. We’ll have to warn her to be quiet and gentle because, aside from the fact that he is scared, we do not know how he responds to children.
I actually wouldn’t mind getting Morrigan a dog, but I feel the time is just not right. We’re barely getting back on our feet. Getting a dog now means pet deposits, vet bills, and all of the other expenses that come with pet ownership. So, if we are unable to find this little guy’s owner, we’ll be looking for a rescue or no-kill shelter. I know it’s the logical thing to do, but I still feel like a bit of a heel.