Tag Archives: middle school

The Big Day

My son just left for his first day of middle school. I thought I was ready for it; I thought I wanted him to go back to school. The house hasn’t been quiet for two months, and I thought I’d enjoy the peace. But it’s too quiet now; all I hear is the hum of the fan in the next room, and the ticking of the clock above my head. How apt!

Where has all the time gone?

I cried a little before sitting down to write this. My mind took me back to the days when my baby was learning to walk. His nose crinkled when he grinned, exposing all four of his teeth, as he staggered across the room. When his diapered bottom hit the floor, he giggled. He didn’t seem discouraged by falling, but rather pleased because he’d made it as far as he did.

I hope he never loses his glass-half-full perspective. He’s going to need it more now than he ever has.

I didn’t get to say goodbye before he left. Not the way I had wanted to. His friend came over to get him, and there is to be no lovey-dovey business in front of friends. I understand that and I respect his boundaries, but things felt incomplete. The kid came over twenty minutes earlier than planned, and so we were cut short to begin with, then my son said, “Bye, Mom!” and walked out the door without looking back.

I called him on his cell phone to tell him I love him and wish him a good day. I thought it’d be OK as school hadn’t yet started. He abruptly informed me that he’s not allowed to use the phone on campus and that he was shutting it off. “Bye, Mom!” Bzzzz….

So here I sit on The Big Day, tears streaming down my cheeks, unmotivated to do any work. Good thing I’m allowed to set my own hours. I know I sound terribly clingy, but I’m really not. Not as much as this post might suggest, anyway. I certainly won’t tell my son that I cried or any of that. I just thought that writing about this might help me feel better.

I was wrong.

Posted by Lottie — Copyright © 2008 Rambling On


Fish Camp

My son will be attending the S.T.E.M. program at his middle school. Today and tomorrow they are having what they call “Fish Camp” . It’s an orientation program for first year S.T.E.M students. Parents are not required to attend, and my son really wanted to go by himself. I decided that it would serve as a sort of trial or drill for the rest of the school year.

Armed with my cell phone, a fresh haircut and “hot” clothes, he left the house about an hour ago. We agreed on a compromise: he will take the city bus in the morning and walk home in the afternoon. That way he doesn’t have to rush to make it to school on time. He thought that was a good idea, and liked the idea of having an extra half hour of sleep.

So he’s there now. He made it safe and sound, all on his own. I knew it would be OK, I just can’t help feeling a little anxious, even though I know Mike and I have raised him to be responsible and trustworthy; he does the right thing even when it’s not easy, and tells the truth even when he knows he might get into trouble.

He’ll do well, and he’ll be fine. I’m very proud of my son.


Growing Pains

In three weeks, my son will begin his first year of middle school. He’s looking forward to it, and I wish I could say that I am too. But I’m terrified. Every time we pass by the school he’ll be attending, I notice how… big it looks. I hadn’t noticed it last year. It was just the middle school; it didn’t have anything to do with me. Denial?

The kids I’ve seen coming and going from the campus look so grown up compared to my son, but maybe that’s just my perspective. Am I still seeing a baby where other people see a developing preteen? Probably.

I actually had to buy him some Oxy Daily Wash and spot treatment. Not that he doesn’t have beautiful skin, but he was starting to get a few blemishes and wanted to nip it in the bud. Good for him! But it was just another reminder of how fast he’s growing up. It seems like we went from buying training pants to acne medicine in the blink of an eye.

The thing that I’m worried most about is transportation to and from school.

Last year, he rode the school bus, which picked him up right at the corner of our block. I could watch from the window as he boarded the bus. After that, I knew he was OK. If anything happened, I would be notified right away. This year, though, he can’t ride the school bus because the middle school is less than a mile from our house. Since I don’t have a car, he can either ride the city bus, which he can catch just around the corner, or walk.

I want him to ride the bus. He wants to walk. That scares the shit out of me!

The street he would have to walk down is quite busy, but there’s sidewalk (pavement for you Brits!) all the way, and no major streets to cross. His friend who lives across the street is one year ahead of him, so he attended the same middle school last year and started walking it about half way through the year. They could walk together, and they’ll probably be just fine. I’m just… not ready for this.

These growing pains are killing me. Don’t they have a pill for this yet? Or was that Valium?

But I have to let go a little at a time. He’s been walking alone to nearby shops for nearly a year now. The school isn’t much farther away. It’s exactly 0.92 miles or 1.48 kilometers (yes, I mapped it). He’s shown himself to be responsible and trustworthy and I suppose it’s about time.

At least he’ll get the cell phones he’s been begging for, because he sure as shit won’t be walking that road without one!

Damn it!