Back 2 School: I’m a Mess

IMG_0002The first week of school started for us after Labor Day this week. My daughter was so excited. I must admit I was dreading the start of school. Let me be honest for a moment, unlike many parents the start of school tends to bring on anxiety for me. My daughter commutes quite a distance from our home to her school and until last year I would battle the traffic and drop her off and pick her up in the evenings. The drop off/pick-up schedule was no longer feasible after baby boy was born so we hired a private busing service.  I thought that having someone else driving would reduce the stress, but instead I am still loaded with anxiety because she is on the bus for over two hours each way! It is such a good thing that she keeps great spirits. The week was filled with smiles and funny stories, lots of homework, but no missed bedtimes. I was so proud of her this week.

She started 6th grade and I remember that being my toughest year. I switched schools that year, leaving behind all my childhood friends. I think that was a life changing moment that impacted me forever. I went on to a school where I didn’t make friends as easily because everyone was already settled into their “clicks” and I was an “outsider”. I met a few friends, but none that stuck with me. My daughter’s a different shade of blue so to speak. She is vibrant, soft spoken, but so friendly and kind. She will melt your heart when you meet her. Her first week in middle school was exciting. Although at the same school, she was not with all the same friends from previous years, which I thought was a blessing. I tell her all the time it’s always a good idea at this age to meet new people as she does just that. Something I struggled with because I was simply too shy.

I swear this week has made me feel like an awkward kid again and all I had to do was wake up and see her onto the bus. I’ve been nervous, anxious, and a little afraid. Crazy, I know! I felt like I was dropping her off at pre-school all over again. In retrospect, she is becoming a teenager and I am starting the mommy to a baby role all over again with her little brother. Could that be it? I even had thoughts of him starting school one day and got teary eyed. This week has just been a roller coaster of emotions. I watched as my baby girl headed off to school without me and I knew she didn’t need me. Although it was hard to admit, I was proud to know it was true. I’m raising her to be ready for anything. From a distance, I’ve watched her fix her clothes in the mirrors and dust off her shoes in just two short weeks she will be twelve. I can’t believe how far she and I have come. Today I held her hand as we crossed the street. We are off to a great school year. Now if I can just put the tissue box away.

Rainbows and Butterflies,

Janelle

Janelle Robinson is from Chicago a proud wife and mother of 2 (teen and preschooler). She is health educator and writer with a focus on providing families with resources and tips throughout all stages of parenthood.

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