Wednesday, September 3, 2008


I've heard so much about this darn whistle that I think my head is going to spin like the lady on the movie "The Exorcist". Geez! It was all just bad timing. They brought Payton back from therapy and took her outside about the exact same time Mrs. Miller was blowing the whistle for kids to come back inside. That was yesterday - so, really, there's not been a break from the whistle. Last night Bob and Payton ran into Mrs. Miller at Walmart. I ask Bob if Payton said anything to Mrs. Miller and he said "oh, yeah.......'where's your whistle?'" I just looked at him and laughed. In all seriousness I was not a bit suprised that she asked about it - it has been a topic of conversation at our house every second of every day at our house now. She's was up til 11:00pm worrying about it yesterday and has been up since 4:30am worrying about it this morning. I feel sorry for her because of her constant tummy aches and inability to sleep because of it, but I really don't know what more to say. So, this morning, off we go to school again. She's in the back seat telling me she doesn't want to go to school, she doesn't like it, her tummy hurts. Is it strange not to get emotional anymore? I feel like we've been doing the school thing since she's been diagnosed - okay, not really the school thing - but therapies. I almost feel numb anymore - and sad that something as small as a whistle has taken all the fun out of preschool for her.

Once we go inside her classroom, I ask Mrs. Miller if she is doing okay during the day. Mrs. Miller said "yes, actually, she's doing very well. we're not having any problems". I told her that was great, but I was just concerned because Payton is complaining of her tummy hurting a lot and that she doesn't want to come to school. She said it's going smooth at school and then up walks Payton to Mrs. Miller. She said "We go outside today?" and Mrs. Miller said "No, we can't today because it's raining". Well, knowing how Payton thinks, I knew she didn't ask that question because she wanted to go outside, she asked because she didn't want to hear the whistle (it's only blown when it's time to come in from playing outside). So, I left knowing that today Payton would not have to deal with the whistle.....althought still feeling like I hadn't gotten my point across that she is struggling with the whistle and can't quite get past it.

Three hours later, Bob goes to pick up Payton from preschool. The teacher explained to Bob that Payton was having trouble understanding why they couldn't go outside today because of the rain (basically Payton asked 10,000 times if they were going outside today). The assistant teacher happened to walk by as Mrs. Miller was telling Bob this (her name is Miss Christy and she taught Payton at the learning center when she went there) and she told Mrs. Miller "well, no, actually, she was concerned about the whistle and was just repeatedly asking about going outside because she didn't want to hear the whistle". SHE GOT IT!!! That's exactly right! So, there is hope. I know this little bump will be worked out, but it's hard seeing Payton so stressed out and obsessed over the whistle. Poor thing she's so stressed out for a little four year old :(

And the most amazing part of all - yes, she is mentally retarded....but in her own smart little way she knew if they didn't go outside, she would not have to hear that whistle. The only part I hate about it is that she couldn't take the first 'no, we can't go outside because it's raining' and be calm the rest of the day knowing they weren't going out. Instead, she was still anxious over it and had to repeatedly ask. Oh, Payton, how I pray your little insides can just be calm for a while and not get so anxious.


Every minute counts.... said...

Man that sounds so familiar. Abi has her obsessions that never seem to have an end. Rain right now is more than she can take. Just use your story only insert "rain" instead of "whistle" she has been up all night and is asking non-stop if it is going to rain, then comes "is it going to BOOM?"
I have to tell you that Payton's line of questioning about recess reminds me of an older girl I met a few years ago. She hated the ringing sound of a church bell that was near her school( it was a Catholic church) So in turn she started to want to stay away from people who went to that church.She would then ask people all the time what church they went to. Her mother told her that she could not do that any more, it was not nice. So she would ask people what the Pastor's name at their church was.Her mother explained it like this= Her thinking process was...if they answer Father so-and-so that meant they went to the Catholic church-which meant they had bells-which meant she stopped talking to you.
Funny, they are smart but just in an out-of-the-box kind of way.

Hoping things get better, but knowing how it feels right now.

Michelle said...

My first reaction to your post was "buy the teacher a bell for christmas" but then I read Noel post and realized it may not make a difference. Ugh...I am so sorry poor little Payton is so upset. If Ari asks over and over about something I either giver her the look (and she then answers the question herself) or I tell her I'm not talking about it anymore and I walk away. I've even given her a time out before for perseverating. It has all worked in it's own time...She still perseverates about things that come up but she knows now when we've all had enough. I will keep Payton in my prayers and I will pray the teacher looses her freakin bell! I mean really can't she "modify" how the kids get in the class! Geeze!

Julie said...

Poor kid. I am glad the other teacher got it right away. Maybe this teacher will realize how severe this is and work something out. Glad you got moved in okay.

My Little Superhero said...

I am sure you have thought of this but I am going to throw it out there anyway from a teacher perspective . . . Why is it that someone can't go get Payton and bring her in from outside a few minutes before the whistle is blown so that she doesn't have to experience it at all??? We make modifications for test and other things . . . how hard would this be?? And it would solve a great deal of problem. Granted I don't experience your frusterations but it is not that a teacher or an aide couldn't do that with little effort. Praying it gets better!!!!

Heather said...

I don't know what to say. We know how it is trying to convince teachers and not being able to get our point across. Let's face it. Most teachers have never worked with someone like our kids, and they just need some time to find out themselves that they need to do things differently. She will get to know payton eventually. I just hope poor little Payton can hold out that long. my thoughts are always with you guys.
xoxo Heather

Penny said...

Bless her heart. now my stomach hurts just thinking about Payton and the whistle. Poor thing. Keith is that way about the Lawn Mowers.

Perhaps you can talk to the teacher adn ask her not to use it? Can they ring a bell or clap their hands? It couldn't hurt to ask...

Please give her special hugs from Keith and I

Michelle said...

I'm sorry the whistle is causing her so much anxiety and stomach aches! Could they start bringing her inside before the whistle blows so she doesn't have to hear it?