For the most part our eldest two have coped well with the move from Australia to England. They love their school and in our eldest’s case this is the first class where he’s had more than one friend he gets along well with. Our middle son has flourished academically (honestly I think moving into Year One 6 months early was the perfect thing for him academically! Just enough oomph to keep him challenged) and he has benefited from being in a class full of English girls (12 girls and 5 boys)…something I think he’ll remember for years to come even if we moved back to Aus tomorrow.
Our youngest surprised me in the last two weeks with his overwhelming feelings of homesickness. I have never seen one of my children burst into tears purely from sadness (not hurt by his brothers, not teased by his brothers, not over tired, not told “no”, not sick, not hungry……just….sad).
Our youngest burst into tears at the breakfast table. He had just finished his Weet-a-bix and he was alone at the table whilst I made myself a coffee. It wasn’t a loud screechy cry like our boys are so often prone to do when something’s not going their way or they’ve been hurt. It was just a slow and steady cry of sorrow.
I’m not a morning person. I nag and grumble and yell until everyone is FINALLY dressed and in the car on the way to school. Mornings suck balls!
However, hooray for Mummy instincts that I thought were squashed under the sleep-deprived haze of early mornings. I knew something was off!
I went over to him and asked him what was wrong? Did something hurt?
He mumbled something I couldn’t make out whilst shaking his head.
The tears kept falling.
So I scooped him up and sat on his chair with him on my lap. Then I thought to ask the all important question,
“Are you just sad, sweetheart?”.
“Why are you sad?”
“Because all of our family is in Australia.”
What can I do to make that better? How can I cure the heartbreak of a 3 (almost 4) year old who misses his family on the other side of the world?
A few days later I talked to him about it again (I caught him sitting and staring looking totally miserable….so unlike a 3-year-old who is always on the go and never stops talking!) and I eventually asked him if there was anything I could do to make him feel a little better?
“For all of the family to come to my birthday”.
“naaaw sweety, I wish that could happen but it’s just not possible…..what else could Mummy and Daddy do to cheer you up?”
“Maybe a puppy”…..”wait….actually, I don’t think Eddie would like a puppy”…”What about a pet frog?”
So in the end we made a phone call to Nana and let him talk for as long as he wanted. He’s feeling a bit better (homesickness tends to come in waves for me too and is gone as quickly as it swept upon me).
His 4th birthday is in 12 days and we’ve bought a massive lot of Justice League figurines from ebay. I think Justice League episodes and his Superman toy has provided him with the same sort of crutch that Bones has for me in the past month. I don’t know if its healthy but we get by as best we can sometimes!