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Is It The End of Innocence?

Today at 9:18 a.m. I got into my car and cried. I had just dropped Big Girl off at the big, scary public school.

Today I picked her up at 3:15. I want to cry again. Our conversation:

Me: How was school?
Big Girl (BG): It was good. Some things were the same, some were different.
Me: Who did you sit with at lunch?
BG: Well, at first Girl 1 [who she knows], but then Girl 2 [who she also knows] came over. She was mad because her best friend, Sara wouldn’t sit with her so she grabbed me by my wrist and pulled me to sit with her at another table.
Me: (Trying to hide how I felt about what she said.) What did you do?
BG: I didn’t know what to do so I sat with Girl 2.
Me: How do you think Girl 1 felt when you did that? Don’t you think she was sad?
BG: Well, no because she was sitting with someone else. But I didn’t know what to do. Are you mad at me, Mommy?
Me: No, but we can’t let that happen again. You need to make your own decisions.

And then we had a discussion about what it means to be the kid who everyone walks all over. I tried to be upbeat. I told her I was glad she had a good first day aside from the lunchroom thing. And that tomorrow would be another day. But why — OH WHY — is my kid always the one who gets pushed around? She’s like a hurt gazelle in a pride of lions. They always take her down. Or maybe like a runaway in New York City’s Grand Central Station: The pimps can always spot her.

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