Reality is about to set in for my boys tonight. Tomorrow is back to school. Well, at least it is for Drew. DJ gets one more day off while the high school lets the Freshmen have a day to find their way around without the upper grades there. With over 2000 kids at the school, that is a wise idea!!
After the long, lazy days of summer I was thinking that it was going to be a tough transition for both of them. I tried to get them to go to bed earlier as we got closer to the first day. I tried having them get up earlier as well. Neither was a success. Tonight, I am fearing the worst. As a junior in high school, DJ seems rather calm about getting back to school. I keep stressing what an important year it is for him and how he really needs to “step it up this year”, but I think all he hears is, “Blah, blah, blah.” I feel like the teacher in a Charlie Brown cartoon when we begin to talk about school.
Drew is going through something different. Middle School is so different than elementary school. Drew went to the same elementary school where I taught. I know that he loved being there with me in the earlier years. He would often stop by my classroom, peek his head in just to say, “hello.” Fourth and Fifth grade, I saw him less and less. All of my students loved seeing him during the day and although he claims that he, “hated it,” I know it was quite the contrary!!
He has gone through some very different moods and having extreme outbursts over the last few weeks. I know this is normal. They are not ever about school, but I am sure that it is what is causing them. I have been dreading this night for awhile now. I expected it to be a lot of arguing and fussing about getting ready. Especially after a busy weekend of playing baseball and soccer. He had a baseball game yesterday and soccer AND baseball today. Dave coaches his team for soccer. On their way home from their game, Dave called to tell me that Drew wasn’t feeling well. All I could think was, “Are you kidding me?” This can’t be the way we are starting off our school year! “Drew-itis” I call it. Something he comes down with on Sunday nights during the school year. He did not go to his baseball game – he doesn’t like to miss a game so this is a big deal. He came home and went to his room and laid in his bed for a couple of hours. I will be honest, I was not being a “good mom.” I did not want to go check on him. I was angry that it was already starting. I sat and stewed about it instead.
I really think he was not feeling well. Sick? Worried? Anxious? Maybe a combination of them all? I am not sure, but after resting, he came downstairs on his own and began to pack up his backpack for school. He was making sure everything he needed was there. He even allowed – no, asked me to help him – something I have not been allowed to do for awhile. He took a photo of his backpack and immediately added it to Instagram. Drew excited for school?? Where was this coming from? Then he called me upstairs to asked me to help him choose an outfit for school. AN OUTFIT???!!! Anyone who knows Drew, knows that he doesn’t really wear, outfits. Tee shirts and shorts are usually the extent of his wardrobe. He is upstairs now putting together what he plans to wear. He already decided on what he wants to take for lunch tomorrow! He told me he was going to go upstairs for bed at 9:00. This was our agreed upon bedtime when school started up.
It is only the first night. We haven’t even gotten to bedtime yet…but there is a different mood in our house tonight. A calmness I never expected. Will it last? He is waiting for a text message from a few friends to see if they are meeting up to walk together in the morning. He is excited and maybe a bit nervous but seeing even the smallest spark of enthusiasm is a glimmer of hope for me!
So to both my boys and to everyone else staring off a new school year, I wish not only a successful year, but a happy one as well!