Pulling his leg, I responded, "They want to talk to me about all the time you've been spending in timeout."
Last year, when he was just three, The Rock Star was in a class with a child who, unfortunately, spent countless minutes in the timeout chair. He was the child that the rest of the parents used as an example of who not to be like. When I would pick my son up from school I'd ask, "Did you have to go to timeout?" He would answer in the negative and I would continue, "Did Billy*?"
Garrett would reply, "Yeah. Two times." Or three. Or Four. Or 129.
My son never went to timeout last year. I assumed the same was true for this year. However, when I teased that his teachers wanted to see me because of his naughty behavior his face immediately fell. He looked up at me with big greenish grayish cobaltish (whatever is he going to put on his driver's license?) eyes and whispered, "Oh. Yeah." Then he quietly shoved a bite of eggs into his mouth.
Troy and I caught each other's eye across the table.
And then we pried.
The details became incredibly muddied. It was difficult to separate truth from story from confusion from memory from reality. At one point he told me he'd been in timeout three times and one of them was for throwing up on the carpet. I
I pulled him onto my lap. "Why didn't you tell me you'd spent some time in timeout?"
"Because," he cracked mournfully, "it was before Christmas."
"Okay." I responded.
"I really wanted Santa to come." He whispered. "I really wanted my Dragon World Fortress." He paused. "I thought if you knew I was naughty you would tell Santa."
It was hysterical. And heartbreaking. Simultaneously.
As it turns out, Garrett has been sent to the time out chair one time in a year and a half of preschool. It was just before Christmas. Everyone was being overly rambunctious. The Rock Star was leading the pack. His teacher asked him to sit in the timeout chair until he could get rid of the crazies and calm down.
When I got home I called him downstairs.
"Twenty-five times?" I asked.
"You've been sent to timeout 25 times?"
His eyes grew wide as saucers. "It's been that many times?"
"Garrett! No! You silly kid. You only had to go to timeout once--for being hyper."
He replied, "One time? Well that's not so bad."
"Yeah. Let's keep it at one time, okay?"
*Not his actual name