Well, it’s happening. The cap and gown pictures have been ordered, the official school tour has taken place and the graduation date is circled on the calendar. My child is middle school bound and I’m not having an easy time with it.
Maybe my emotions are running high because of the rainy weather we’ve been having, the overwhelming sense of how fast time is moving or maybe, as my husband said, it’s because Mercury is in retrograde. (This is the least Justin sounding thing Justin has ever said. It was hilarious.) Or maybe it’s just because he’s going to middle school.
It’s something I’ve been dreading pretty much since the moment he was born. Now, is my apprehension about him going to middle school completely based around my own experience? Hell yes. Does it actually have anything to do with Brody? Sure, of course, but for entirely different reasons.
As I’ve said here before, middle school was not exactly my happiest time. Given the chance I would highly consider Eternal Sunshining those years from my memory bank but, in the end, probably wouldn’t because they were, um, formative years… important… you know … blah, blah, blah. But they were bad enough that it makes me tense up all over again and worry about how we’re all going to come out of the next three years. (Thinking about it always makes me appreciate how patient my parents were with this time period. So thanks again, Mom and Dad!)
Middle school is a confusing time for everyone. Brains aren’t fully formed, puberty is in full swing and everyone’s a little mean and a lot dramatic. I don’t even think the kids who were popular would ever call middle school the time of their lives. It’s a rough patch (to put it nicely) and I’m having to try really hard to not transfer my feelings onto him and simply let him feel however he wants to feel about it.
My main actual worry for Brody is that he’s leaving the safe, comforting, second home of his elementary school. He has been walking those halls since he was three years old. (He went to preschool there, too.) The fine people that work at that school have been with us throughout the non-talking years (they also laugh about him never shutting up now) and have really felt like family. Most of them treat him like he is one of their own children, and it’s going to be hard not seeing them on a regular basis.
I know he’s going to be in good hands at a brand new, state-of-the-art school with a ton of opportunities, but it’s still scary. Along with the new people and opportunities also come new challenges and disappointments. And I’m not sure any of us are quite ready for the all-encompassing drama that comes along with it.
In all honestly, I really do feel like he’s going to be fine. He’s strangely social (especially coming from the parents he has) and middle school may indeed go down as a happy time in his life. Perhaps he’ll make a ton of new friends and discover new interests, but if he doesn’t, I can certainly say that he’ll have parents that truly understand how hard it can be and will be there to remind him that happier times are just on the horizon.