You know, I don’t usually think about fire drills. They just happen. In fact there has been two alarms in the last two weeks in my own office. And the smoke alarm does tend to go off in our house more times than it should (ok, so
I we do burn things a lot occasionally) during the time when we are awake. Thankfully, it has never gone off while we were sleeping and we have never had an actual fire. There was a fire two doors down from our townhouse once, while the children were with a sitter, and they were fascinated by the firetrucks… But I digress.
They have those in school, remember? And we hadn’t really thought to discuss it with M. To prepare her. Why, do you ask? Well, she is not one to really like loud noises. She gets spooked by thunder. The little one, C, will sleep through any type of storm, but M – she will always cry and cower at the slightest loud noise.
And they had their first fire drills this week.
I guess the first one was on Monday. With another today, Wednesday. And this school’s fire alarm is LOUD, I am told.
So, when she got home tonight, I asked her about it. She said it was so loud, she had to cover her ears. “And then what happened?”
“We went outside.”
“Did you go to the playground?”
“No, to the parking lot.”
“How long were you out there?”
“For two hours.” (This is where I smiled.)
“I don’t think you were out there for two hours.”
“It was a long time. (pause) I don’t want to go back to school. It’s so loud.”
And here is where she started crying.
(Of course, she has been crying a lot lately at the drop of a hat. We are wondering if maybe we should have done only 3 days a week, instead of a full 5 days. Just because she hasn’t been getting much rest, not her normal nap times.)
So, we had a talk about how fire drills are important, because they teach you how to respond in case there is a real fire. They help you practice so you don’t panic, so that everyone is safe in case of a real emergency. But nothing seemed to calm her. She just continues to say she doesn’t want to go to school anymore.