It always amazes me that my three girls react in different ways to different situations. Yes, I know it’s normal and that I shouldn’t expect any different but it always catches me off guard.
My oldest reacts in two ways – if she thinks she’ll be scared or hurt, she won’t do it. No way, no how. My middle daughter will put on a tough act, she’ll slam doors or talk back or just simply refuse to do whatever is asked of her until the very last minute. My youngest on the other hand will conquer any situation – but in her own time, which usually means she’ll take a very long time to talk herself into doing it or will need a lot of reassurance.
As a mom, I feel bad right now that I’m throwing my children into a lot of new situations all at the same time. We’re moving – so they’ve had to get used to the idea of packing, cleaning and just getting in the mindset that we need to sell our house. Which means leaving their school, their friends and everything they know. My oldest is good – she’s actually quite excited. My middle daughter has fought every step of the way (to only packing on the very last day) and my youngest is trying extra hard to not let any of this bother her (she packed up everything in her room – leaving her no toys, she cleans all the time with me and is always wanting to know how else she can help). But not only that … they now have to face going to a new school.
Growing up is hard – and as a mom, it’s my responsibility to help them through this process, not protect them to the point where they can’t grow like they need to. I wish I could go in and all the new girls (and boys) they’ll meet to make sure they’re the right sort of friends, that they aren’t bullied, that their teacher realizes they are new and nervous…but I can’t. What I can do is help prepare them. For my oldest it means helping her straight her hair and make sure she looks okay. My middle daughter will probably need me to act ‘cool’ while loving her at the same time and my youngest…on one hand she wants me to go into the school with her but on the other hand she doesn’t (and I get that). New school = new friends, new teachers, new situations. Tonight, my youngest told me that growing up is so hard, that it’s not like it used to be when she was a kid (she’s only going into grade 5). But she’s right. I went to 6 different schools before I hit grade 6, so I understand how the girls are feeling. What if they don’t make friends on the first day? What if they don’t like their teacher? What if they get bullied again? What if…. there are so many things to worry about, so many things they need to prepare themselves for…at times I wish I could protect them from everything but I know that’s not my job.
I’ve been looking forward to tomorrow all summer – I even had my day planned out – but now, I think I’ll probably end up crying as I drive away after dropping them off and praying that we all get through the day with smiles.
And cake. I think I’ll need to make a cake. Especially this cake. Doesn’t that look good….