As summer comes to an end, back to school anxiety can be quick to follow. It can be the time for butterflies in the stomach, sweaty palms, and fighting back tears when you say goodbye. And that may just be the parents.
For some children it is difficult to fall back into the school routine and for some parents, it is just as hard. My husband and I have two sons in school and our middle son started kindergarten this year. Kindergarten is a big change from preschool and for some children; it may be their first experience in a classroom setting. There were many things that we did to prepare our kids for kindergarten. We visited the school; we read books on the subject and had many discussions about starting school. It is still understandable that kids may feel nervous about the change in schedule and separation from the people that they are used to being with all day. As a parent, it is entirely different.
Many of us have dropped off our children and have seen the Moms with the weepy eyes and the red noses, trying to fake a smile unsuccessfully. I get it. They aren’t crying because they are sad that they will finally have a few hours to run errands or (dare to say it) have some “free time” of their own. They are crying because when they watch their child that is finally old enough to go to school, instead of seeing that independent person walking away, they see someone else. Their mind flashes back to their sweet baby taking his first steps or grabbing their face with his pudgy little hands and saying “Mama, I wuv you!” A parent wants to protect his/her child from everything. You want them to be liked by other kids. You want them to be happy when you can’t be with them. You don’t want to be the parent that the teachers have to pry the child off of and pull through the building doors as she screams for you. You don’t want to be the Mom that turns quickly around and rushes to the car to avoid anyone seeing the tears on your cheeks as you try to forget your child’s cries. The very thing that you have been preparing them for is breaking your heart at the same time.
There are so many things to question as you send your child to school.