My sixth grader decided that she knows everything she needs to at the ripe old age of 11. In other words, she doesn't want to go back to school this fall. She wants to drop out, draw and play video games for the rest of her life. Obviously, I'm having none of that. And if I didn't know any better, I'd say that my kiddo has a garden-variety case of the back-to-school blues. However, do I, as her dutiful mother, share her being blue over school? Not so much.
I Love Back-to-School Time, Sort Of
Summertime in my house is a kind of odd mania. Since I work from home, my offspring get the entire brunt of my oh-so-charming personality all day, every day; and I theirs. By the time school starts up again, we are all more than ready to part ways…or strangle each other. As you can imagine, back to school means back to sanity -- or what little of it I had to begin with. It means that constant interruptions cease, I can get things done and the kids are more productive too. Really, it's a good thing for us all.
This is What Happens When Kids go Back to School
The back to school ritual in my home is always the same: I take the girls school supply shopping on tax-free weekend, I lament over the ever-increasing costs of everything, we pack the backpacks and then trek them to meet the teacher night. After that, we are done.
However, this year the ritual is different. The twins are headed to college, sans lists. And my sixth grader's list isn't quite as demanding as lists of yesteryear. So my everything-costs-too-much-money lament might be short lived. All the same, I find myself daydreaming of school bells and quiet days ahead. I look forward to days where I don't see teenagers sprawled across the sofa, have to deal with a pre-teen's head buried in a computer screen all day or contend with the screeching claims from all three of my children that there is "absolutely nothing in the house to eat." But even in the wake of all the things that made me smile, I got to thinking, and I wondered if maybe I wasn't being a tad too callous about my youngest tot's case of back to school blues.
Beating the Back-to-School Blues
The primary reason my youngest isn't thrilled about returning to school bells and structure this fall has more to do with the obvious reason that school cuts into her lazy days of summer as opposed to something deeper or more psychologically troubling. In fact, the back to school blues are quite common in kids of various ages, and a case of nerves is completely normal.
All the same, I am cognizant of the fact that my daughter is at the age where back to school blues could be triggered by run of the mill adolescent angst and the onset of the girl wars. When girls near teenager hood, everything in life becomes a bit more complex than it was the year before, and girls can just be downright evil. Friendships change, people go through their "awkward phases" and alliances are formed and broken in the blink of an eye. I am no stranger to the girl wars. After all, this isn't my first rodeo. However, for now, I've told my sprog to buck up and saddle up for another year of learning. And she has. Albeit begrudgingly.
However, if on the first day of school, you see me walking with my head down and shoulders slumped, think nothing of it. I'm just fighting off my very own case of the back to school blues. Because even though they are up my butt all summer and drive me batty, I rather miss my girls when they're gone all day. (Don't tell them though.)
So now that you know about mine, I want to know from you: How do you combat the back to school blues?
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