Monday, April 26, 2010

A Blessed Thing!

Saturday was Welcome Day at my youngest son's new high school. He was given a t-shirt reminding us that 2014 is the year of his graduation. Like I need another reminder.

My husband drove him to Welcome Day early Saturday morning. Dropped him off and then went to Trader Joe's and Safeway-- part of Tom's weekly Saturday morning routine.

The night before I thought we had made a plan. He would stay with him until his exam and then I would arrive after the test.

The students had to take a math placement exam at 9:30 and then meet with an advisor to pick out their courses and then have lunch with a group of total strangers.

The parents were supposed to gather to learn more about the school and get to know one another.

And my husband just dropped him off. He is the second child and I'm sure that's why he is so well adjusted but, he just dropped him off.

When I called at 9:00am to check on Will and found out he was at Trader Joe's I went berserk. I mean, it's a brand new school and he just left him there to fend for himself.

Of course, I jumped in the shower and flew over to the high school. I was right there when young Will exited his exam.

And of course, he was fine. He found a friend to sit with and seemed completely at ease with the entire process.

First lesson. I freak way too easily. But we all know that. And just because I freak doesn't necessarily mean my kids will freak. I should have learned this already. But I'm a bit thick in the head. I over mommy. I know. But, he just dropped him off!

After I got over that...(DEBATABLE IF I EVER DID!) the rest of the day was wonderful. It was great to feel like the young Mom again. I have a rising freshman. Let's forget about the almost rising senior I have living with me and concentrate with the 'almost' freshman.

Will is such a great kid but I still worry that the kids will play nice, that he won't get too stressed with homework and exams and that he will make a couple of good friends.

It seems I worried about the same things when he went off to kindergarten.

A wonderful friend called me on Friday. She happened to be at our town's post office when the local elementary school kids were visiting on a field trip. She reminisced about the times when all three of her kids did the exact same field trip. They all get weighted like a piece of mail. It's so incredibly sweet.

My heart ached for a moment. I remember that field trip as well. Now, I'm sending Will into high school.

And now I know high school goes so quickly. A blink of an eye. The years melt into each other, as the kids try and discover who they are and what they want. The years are a harsh and tender. On both mother and sons, fathers and daughters. They are fraught with emotional challenges and exhaustions.

In the end, I think the last one standing wins.

In my case, the jury is still out. But I will have two high school boys next year, God willing. And it is a blessed thing!


  1. "Harsh and tender." So much of motherhood can be summed in these two adjectives, can't it? I, too, "over-mommy" and I would have high-tailed it up there if my husband had just dropped off my kiddo. You are not alone on this bittersweet journey! =>

  2. I know how you feel Terry! It was traumatic last year when my 3rd started HS. It is such a huge marker in their lives and our own. Now I have 2 in college and HS seems so safe and tender to me in comparison. I'd like to keep her there forever. But already we're talking about where she wants to attend college, and planning the visits for next year when she's a junior. Hard to remember those long draining days when it seemed like I'd have 3 under 7 years old forever...
    Lovely post; I'm glad to be back!

  3. We both have Class of 2014-ers in our family! I think the high school thing is especially poignant because it seems like the blink of an eye when I spent my last days there as a senior and then suddenly it was the 20 year reunion, then the 30 year!

    Did I mention that my son is going to the same high school I went to? Horror of horrors! It's like having your kid relive every nightmare of your life!

  4. I step foot in the school only if one of my children has: a) lost consciousness; b) is bleeding so badly he needs stitches; or c) has a broken bone.

    Other than that, they know better than to call me. School, especially high school, is an experience in learning responsibility. Preferably on their own.

  5. Two kids in high school. I'm just as freaked as you are!

  6. Another "time flies" post that just makes me sit and think. How fast it all goes. Seems like yesterday that I was in high school so I can just imagine how quickly the time goes for my kids to be there. Just have to enjoy the moments. Or at least be a part of them.

    I would have freaked at my husband too... absolutely. Those men just don't think do they??

  7. I loved this post, especially the detail of your memory of the field trip to the post office.

    As a former high school teacher, I remember those "revisit" days so well: the nervous freshmen, their nervous parents. And I remember a wise remark made by a colleague when I admitted that I, a new-ish teacher, was nervous too: "Everyone just wants everything to be okay. So just make everyone feel like it is."

    And isn't that applicable to all of parenting? We just want everything to be okay.

  8. Ahh...Well, just to let you know that craziness never changes no matter how old they are six or ninety-six. That constant worry about whether they are okay and god forbid some child hurts your child...I just blogged about this when my daughter was in fifth grade, I went after the little girl who was bullying her. Really?? Yes, really. I think as they get older our job is to find appropriate ways to channel that anxiety, like yelling at our husbands for JUST DROPPING THEM OFF. Ha!