Child 1 doesn't like fire drills, for obvious reasons (loud, change in schedule, chaotic, etc.) but at the end of last year they became kind of an obsession for him. Every day was a constant barrage of "will there be a fire drill tomorrow?" "will there be a fire drill today?" "I don't want to go to school in case there's a fire drill" "I can't go to school because there might be a fire drill." etc. etc. etc. ETC!!! It was a nightmare after a while. Then summer happened and the obsession faded, although interestingly, at summer camp, there was an actual FIRE, which caused the alarm to go off, and they all had to evacuate like you practice in the drill. That caused a little bit of anxiety, but that faded. Then, when school started again, I was all prepared for the endless barrage of questions again, but he only asked once or twice and then it went away. I've been very happy about that.
Well, I have now received 2 emails, one from his teacher, one from the school's principal, that there will be a fire drill this Friday at 11:30. Here we go again! ?
Now, I know your mind is formulating all these very helpful suggestions right now on ways to make things better for him, but really, please don't bother. If you can think of it right now, we've tried it and it didn't work. No, I'm serious, I don't need any suggestions here, so stifle that urge. You see, he's not actually worried about the dill itself, during the actual drill he's completely fine and calm, it's just that the fire drill has come to embody his anxieties about whatever he's anxious about in general, and he's still not really able to tell me about his anxieties, so it comes out in the form of anxiety about the fire drill. Therefore, preparing him for the drill itself is meaningless, since that's not actually what he's worried about. Get it? No? Good. Seriously. Zip it.