Every June the fifth graders take a one-day field trip to Boston. They visit the Aquarium and the Science Museum. Since third grade, when Bear got wind of this trip, she has been adamant that she does not want to go.
"I don't know."
The reasons she gives have fluctuated with the years. She's afraid of getting carsick. She isn't really interested in seeing Boston (this from the kid who is fascinated by history). She heard they'd be seeing an exhibit of dead people. (They aren't). The trip would take too long on a bus (actually a valid point, but I didn't concede it). She doesn't want to see the Science Museum. She probably wouldn't have anyone to sit with on the bus. Now with the peanut allergy, she has a new fear - that the restaurant they eat dinner in wouldn't be peanut-free.
Sidenote: I contacted her teacher weeks ago about the difficulty of her dealing with the peanut issue on this trip. She said that I could have a chaperone spot, which is a total score. Tons of parents volunteer; the lucky few are drawn out of a hat.
Even knowing I would be going AND bringing Dramamine AND finding out if the restaurant was OK for her didn't reassure Bear. She moped and moped and moped about it.
I asked her to make a list of some concrete reasons for not wanting to go on this field trip. She listed 12. About 2 were grounded in some form of reality. I talked it over with Tom. I found out from her teacher that the trip was optional. We decided that she has herself so worked up over it that she probably wouldn't enjoy it anyway. We caved.
She smiled happily and hugged me when I told her. I was disappointed that she'd be missing out on a really cool trip, but pleased to ease her anxieties. And, hey, we'd be making a family trip down to Boston at some point in the near future.
Ten minutes later she drifted back into the kitchen, "Mom? I might want to go on the Boston trip, OK?"
God help me.