Back to School: The End of Week One

   By JerriAnn  Aug 25, 2011

 Dear Boys,

You are growing so quickly, the first week of grades 3 and 1 are complete.  Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t easy.  In one week we’ve already surpassed the meltdown over what to wear, various  meltdowns over bedtime, received a discipline note and been asked for yet more classroom supplies.  Not only that, you’ve managed to cry over homework and even complete a reading test, a vocabulary test and a spelling test.  Throw in a meltdown or two over what the school serves for lunch and what you deem as appropriate and heck, we may not make it through week two at this rate. 

I know I’m being a bit dramatic but when I look back to my own start into third grade, I started a new school, I was left with an alarm clock to get dressed, eat breakfast, make my own lunch and catch the bus without the assistance of an adult at all.  I was sent home on a school bus to a brand new babysitter for a large portion of the afternoon.  There was no room for meltdowns and hysterics.  I turned out ok as I continued down this path for the rest of my life.  I handled my own morning woes and afternoon woes as well for that matter. 

Am I doing you an injustice by being here for you?  Should I back off and let you go to school dressed like you slept in your clothes?  What about brushing your teeth?  I have to battle you every morning, and night for that matter, to get this done, I didn’t have anyone hanging around to force me to do these things, I just did it because I was suppose to before I left for school.  I was 8, just like one of you. 

And discipline?  I never, in my entire school career brought home a note indicating that I had caused trouble during the day.  Yet we didn’t get past day 2 and one of you had already committed the cardinal sin.  Where do we go from here?  Do I let you live and learn, make your mistakes and pay for them?  Or do I protect you, help you get over the rough patches although I somehow managed to do so without the assistance of a helicopter parent. 

We’ve done our best to see that you understand the rules, both at home as well as at school.  Why is it that both of you seem to feel there’s some shoulder room for skating around the edges?  I wasn’t given any special treatment and I certainly wasn’t given any room for error.  Is the difference about gender?  Who am I kidding, you’re just two little boys, raised in a totally different generation whose parents function with a completely different style.  I just can’t decide if that’s a good thing or if we are slighting you and leaving you open for failure in the future.  


Your Sincerely Confused Mother


Make a Comment

biscut1510 by biscut1510 | WEST CHESTER, PA
Aug 31, 2011

I think EVERYONE is overreacting in this picture. The teacher is seeing to it (by God!) that this behavior will NOT continue all year long by 'nipping it in the bud'.  Mom's writing letters to children (& Blogs) that don't have full cognitive development, and the kids are reacting like..... Little children? OUR memories of those 'old times' are skewed.  DON'T KID YOURSELF. Once we go negative, we sound like that school teacher on Charlie Brown... "wawa.. Wawa!"  Our babies ARE growing up in a whole new world!  It IS exciting.  It's so much to handle for EVERYONE. Bond, prep. & communicate.   Lord knows, he's the only one who knows what's next. Prepare ahead for poss. meltdowns like setting a new bedtime, homework, tv, gaming & routines at Least 1 week prior to d-day.  And, heaven help us parents, KEEP IT CONSISTENT! Then, our letters to our children will be ones that you'll WANT to be passed along as part of legacy

biscut1510 by biscut1510 | WEST CHESTER, PA
Aug 31, 2011

I sympathize with your frustration. In (trying to) teach my 11yo boys, I'm constantly reflecting on my effectiveness.  We're different parents than or own.  But were they wrong?  That's your question, right?  Everything IS different.  Weren't you already 'helicopter'ing your children as toddlers & infants?  Hell,  I was even 'monitoring' mine IN-VITRO! We were kicked out of the nest before we learned to fly.  And it WAS fun!  On our own, to play in the dirt & rain with worms and making jewelry out of fireflies by ripping them apart.   So now we are left with our children.  Protected, supported, enriched, & sanitized to the hilt.  Hey, they have Einstein & Mozart.  That should make them smarter & more apt to make wise decisions.  Right? That's the philosophical viewpoint.  Up for many hours of 'grown-up night' chatter. Now some cold-hard facts. Continued....

RoyalT by RoyalT | NEW YORK, NY
Aug 26, 2011

We have two weeks to go but the anxiety is already creeping in... Thanks for your post, it's hard to have all the answers. If you care this much I'm sure they will be just fine in the future.

w2005blc by w2005blc | HENDERSON, NV
Aug 26, 2011

Love it! It can really be challenging sometimes! My son starts on Tuesday.