Well, it’s been a little while and I hope that, on Tuesday morning, wherever you are, you are enjoying a nice hot cup of coffee and listening to some semblance of silence … at least kid-free-silence. There really is nothing better. Unless you have a donut with you … then you’ve hit the jackpot.
My kids are headed back to school in 2 days. And I’m pretty sure there’s nothing that makes me more clinically bi-polar than the first day of school. The relief, the joy, the freedom … it’s a rush. The endless (7) hours ahead of me to do as I please. No more tripping over bored adolescents or hearing the theme song to a particularly addictive 80’s TV show (Have mercy!) or eavesdropping in on unmonitored chaos in the basement muttering “I don’t even want to know what they are doing” or literally and figuratively cleaning up spilled milk.
But the other half? Well, the other half sucks balls. The fear, the worry, the anxiety … paralyzing at times. Are they going to be ok? Are they??? (That’s not a rhetorical question!! I need a 3 page essay on whether or not you think my kids are ok!!) I stopped reading the news years ago because of this reason. Let me tell you – if you read the news, they most certainly are NOT going to be ok. They will be bullied, harassed, and teased. They will be taught poorly and not given the right skills to succeed. They will be held at gunpoint and scared and scarred for life. They will face depression and thoughts of suicide from social media. And of course I could go on and on … but I don’t want you to have too much fun reading this!
In no way am I minimizing these horrible things that have happened – because they have happened and I want to take every one of those kids and put them in a protective bubble and nurture and care for them until their wounds are healed, but our kids are going to be ok. They really are. Ok, I may have pulled that out of my butt crack (where all of my most fabulous ideas have originated), but I’m going with it.
They are resilient and strong and smarter than we realize. And maybe I’m just saying all this to make myself feel better (as I bite my nails to the quick worrying about all three of mine), but I’ve had some fabulous school years with these kids and some pretty horrific ones and you know what? They’re ok. They floated down rivers, swam in oceans, hiked mountains, went to camps, hung out with their friends … and they smiled and laughed hysterically this summer. (Don’t let me fool you – they also screamed, cried, melted down, told me they hated me and barfed up cotton candy)
Do they have their struggles? Um, yes … in spades. But you know what? They’re ok. I worry more about them than is possibly necessary. And I have to remind myself, before going into some sort of crazy mom-induced coma from my excessive worrying, that they are ok and are going to be ok. I love them. Their father loves them. Their family loves them. If nothing else, they are loved. Do I want more for them than that? Of course. But I’ve spent so many years waiting for the other shoe to drop that I forgot to really look and see that they are ok.
Your kids are going to be ok.
Now you do realize that since I’ve written this, this WILL be the the worst year ever for my kids (I never lose my lust for negativity!) and I will post something in June saying how I was completely full of shit and all blog posts from the “former, delusional” me will be printed out and burned in a raging bonfire (we can all roast marshmallows!!!), but for right now, the only way I can live is to assume they will be ok. The alternative is daunting and scary as all hell and if I lived like that I’d never let the kids leave the house … and if
you I think I’m screwing up the kids now, that would REALLY do it.
(Disclaimer: I don’t know your kids. I have no idea if they are going to be ok. They may, in fact, not be. I pull stuff out of my butt crack all the time and pass it off as “advice” … in fact, to be honest, MY kids are not ok. But I pretend they are so I can tell people I’m a good mother. I’m secretly only adequate – and even that’s a stretch.)