Dropping Rigel off at preschool today wasn't as hard as the last 2 occasions (howling, teachers peeling him off of me, etc.). Alas, there was crying during the car ride, but once we reached our destination, all crying ceased. Rigel seemed as though he had accepted the challenge presented before him and was ready to tackle the playground head on. Mounting a tricycle, his lower lip quivered as he paused to address me, "I'll miss you, Mommy." Then, eyes afront, he peddled onward. Sigh. It's working, he's settling in... now I'll attempt to refrain from hovering outside those few minutes after I drop him off and before I pick him up, watching for any signs of undue distress. On second thought, maybe not quite yet... I'd rather know just how he is doing than to guess.
Side Note: During the car ride to school, Rigel cried that "preschool is scary. You're going to be gone for a really long time... The boys and girls don't like me there, and people are mean..." So, I explained that this was a good preschool, and that I wouldn't let him go there if it was not a safe place... that I chose that school because it was safe and so he could have lots of fun. I told him I understood that it was scary to be going to a new place without me. I explained that even nice people can act mean sometimes, and how important it was to tell people how he felt, and that it is not okay to be mean. I pretended to take a toy from him (since that is a sensitive issue for him), and had him practice saying, "Hey! I don't like it when you take my toy. Please give it back." He just mumbled back to me very quickly and quietly, so I told him he needed to practice telling people how he feels in a strong voice while looking the other person in the eye. I figured we would practice it more later, but once we were on the playground, another kid's tricycle bumped into the back of Rigel's. Without hesitation, he turned around and yelled, "Hey! I don't like it when you do that! That's not nice!" Then he peddled away, while I stood there trying to turn my grimace into a smile, saying "Um, that was good!" Guess he doesn't need any more practice, huh? And, I'm not too worried about his complaints regarding the school. He always has a smile on his face when I pick him up, and doesn't seem to want to leave. He even explained to Dan last night that, "I like preschool. Mommy found me a new one where I can have fun, because the other one was scary."