Thursday, October 7, 2010

Lonely Lunch

You ever watch a movie where there was that one kid at lunch time who sat all alone at a table, and you feel bad for then, but you think "It's only a movie"...??? Yeah. I watched that movie yesterday. Only it wasn't a movie. It was real. And it was my child who sat alone. And my heart absolutely broke.

I volunteered to help out during lunch a few times a month, and yesterday was my first day. Meagan's lunch was first. She was gabby, and talked to her friends, and basically anyone who would listen, for the whole lunch period.

Isaac's was last. He was also at a table full of people, and was very happily engaged in conversation (and eating... that boy LOVES to eat).

Sebastian's lunch was squished somewhere in the middle. He came in, took a seat, and started eating his packed lunch. At that time, most of the cafeteria was empty because most of the kids were in line to buy. However, as the room started filling up, I noticed that his table was not. Across the isle from him there was a table that was very obviously filling up with every boy in the 4th grade (except for Sebastian, of course). But there were still a lot of kids in line, so there was still hope. I asked Sebastian who he usually sits with. I thought maybe his friend from down the street, who was still in line at the time, might come sit with him or something. He said, "Well, I usually sit here." I asked why he doesn't go sit with all the boys at the big 'boy table'... which, I soon found out, was also where his friend sits. He said, "Well, that table is usually full. So I sit here." Nothing else was said about it. A few girls came and sat across from him. Another boy came and sat a few seats down from the girls. And the other end of the table filled up with a mix of kids. But Sebastian sat alone.

My heart absolutely broke. I wanted to cry. I wanted to hug him (how embarrassing would that have been for him!). I wanted to push those boys together and make them make room for him. I wanted to lecture them for what they were doing. Their whole school is on a big 'bucket-filling, no bullying' campaign, and here these kids are isolating my child because he's new and they don't know him. AAAAAH! I'm STILL mad about it. Hurt by it. Sad for him. No wonder the child tells me he misses Michigan. He was surrounded by friends there. Friends who liked him, talked to him, shared with him.

This just DOES NOT make a Mama's heart happy. I feel helpless. What is there to do? I don't know how to help him. I can't MAKE those kids include him. I can't MAKE him like to be rough and tumble so that he can relate to them better. I can't fix this for him. I hate it.

I hate it.



Kelli said...

Oh hugs for the both of you... that is heart-breaking... what a helpless feeling. (great job showing restraint... I probably would have tried to meddle and made these worse).

Anonymous said...

How heartbreaking. What about arranging a play date? Something super fun like laser tag or some other "boy" thing that would interest other kids enough to come? Sounds like he needs some sort of ice breaker so everyone can get to know each other better. Making friends doesn't come as easy for some as it does others....I know the husband has a really hard time getting to know new people and sometimes comes across as "snobby" or "uninterested" as opposed to just shy in large groups. (Knowing him, I'm sure you have a hard time believing

Praying for you and Sebastian.