Wednesday, June 21, 2017

A Few Important Reminders

These are just a few simple reminders for all of us out there who might need them:

Nobody in the world is just like you.
What works for you may not work for others.
Your way may not be the only way.
Your way may not be the best way. (This is a tough one.)
What is easy for you, may be virtually impossible for others.

Because when your child feels the need to inform you that her life has always been hard, especially when unstructured, that she is doing better this summer than any other, and follows up with: “Did you think life would miraculously become easy for me?” ... it may be time for some reminders.

Thank you.

Us Too

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Being Good at "Being Me"

I remember bawling when Jordan walked out the door on her first day of middle school. I have never not walked her to the bus stop on the first. I looked out my bedroom window so I could catch a glimpse of her.  She was standing quietly surrounded by some large high schoolers, and I sobbed.  It felt like kindergarten all over again.

I knew she was as prepared as humanly possible. She organized her two binders for hours, made a color coordinated excel spreadsheet of her schedule, and made sure she had many copies. She perfected her first-day outfit, and learned to wax and tweeze her eyebrows, because apparently they were “too hairy”. I don’t think I realized I had eyebrows in sixth grade. Basically, her prep for middle school took weeks of effort and planning.

As adults, we are well aware that no matter how organized and prepared a person is, there’s no guarantee life will go as expected. On Jordan’s second day, she couldn’t find her Spanish homework (it was in her binder the whole time), had to get a hall pass, couldn’t find her locker, walked into the wrong room, (filled with eighth graders), and started to sweat.

My initial reaction to her detailed, daily account was to brace myself for the blow; be prepared for anything.  I promised myself that this time I wouldn’t get upset, angry or emotional. Middle school is scary, and any reaction would be acceptable and “normal”. Cringe. I was brutally aware of the possible repercussions, when Jordan felt out of control and overwhelmed.

Okay, so maybe it’s not surprising that today I take Zoloft for anxiety, because I seem to be pretty effective at making something out of nothing, and of worrying about things that are out of my control. What is the point of that?? If you know you have absolutely no control over something (for instance, EVERYTHING about your child) then to sit around all day guessing and worrying... it’s futile.

I must have kept my mouth shut, because Jordan retreated to her room for a while, and by evening she was laughing about her day. Laughing... Jordan… Afterwards she showed me her first short assignment. It asked:  What are you good at?, and her answer was: “Being me.”            

Holy crap!
Thank you,

Us Too

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The End of the Elementary School Era

Oh, hell yes.

The day had arrived. The day when Jordan was “graduating” from elementary school. And I cried like a baby. Many of the wonderful, expected events were creeping up on us little by little. Sure, I knew eventually Jordan would begin to shave (thankfully without “bleeding to death” which I have been told was a real concern), have crushes on boys, and get cascaded into the middle school drama, but sometimes it still caught me off guard. I was, after all, a mom who had three little kids, all in the elementary school. Middle school was a completely different world, and let's face it, I was too young. ;)

Jordan exited elementary school at the top of her class. She got 11 academic awards and certificates. It’s funny how someone is instantly thrust into the “smart kid” group. She loved it, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel a certain level of pride and relief. For the next eleven years of her life, she was going to be submerged into the ever-so-wonderful-world of institutionalized learning, and it seemed to be a perfect fit for her.

That being said, there was one downfall of her achieving this newly acquired status so young: there was no guarantee that it would last.  Although she graduated with an A average, I can’t tell you the number of times throughout high school she said to me: “I was one of those kids. I should be taking all the AP classes and getting those awards.  That was me, but my mental illnesses messed it all up.” Crap.

Thank you.

Us Too