Hey, Parent, Is Your Kid Starting a New School Year? LOL, Good Luck, Chump
I'm sitting here trying not to cry. Not exactly sure why I'm holding back, probably just habit, a discipline I've forced on myself from years through the losses and hard stuff, and harder stuff, the anxiety, the depression, the joy. Anyway. In addition to absolutely drowning in emails from the 2 (two) schools our children now attend, requesting we attend the thirty-seventh orientation and buy uniforms, spirit wear, and school supplies, and touch base with the teachers, admin, and janitors regularly, we're also all just drowning in big feelings right now.
I'm the only tear-free one in the house as we head into the second week of school.
Transitions are always hard, and for little guys, who have to keep all their shits together during the day at school, all of the pent-up reactions to the hardness comes out in buckets when they get home...to their safe place. To the place where they don't have to impress, where they are unconditionally loved, where they are accepted and belong. It's probably beautiful that they feel like they can let down so thoroughly here, but it doesn't look beautiful. It looks loud, and mean, savage at times, violent. It feels like loss of control and failure.
I rather respect that they share so much, allow themselves to feel so much, still operate out of so much id, but also it's holy hell hard as the parents. Their feelings are just splashing everywhere, painting our house floor-to-ceiling with all the colors.
We've been using that metaphor lately- they have so many lovely, colorful feelings, and each one is important and worthy- the goal is to be able to understand them, manage them, make complicated art with them instead of losing them all over the floor and walls or splashing them in their siblings eyes and starting a fight, my God, please stop fighting.
We're all working on that. On accepting and honoring are colorful emotions, AND handling them with care. It's hard.
One thing I'm personally working on is not taking responsibility, experiencing guilt and ownership, over everyone else's dark colors or what they do with their paint. I worry that I didn't Bob Ross them right if their colors are off the canvas and not making happy little trees. I neglect my own emotional art as I fret over their efforts to make theirs. (Side note: Bob Ross videos YouTube are EXCELLENT peaceful, mindful, short watches when we need to simmer down)
In our house this week, we're trying to keep things simple and positive, as best we can. Sleep, hydration, healthy food choices(ish), exercise, creative pursuits, mindfullness, creating calming, organized spaces to re-center ourselves. We're also acknowledging teeny, tiny victories when we express feelings productively rather than destructively. This all applies to both in the kids and the adults, btw.
It's all hard and I have to hope that there will be gain over time. Just as the transition of the school year gets less jarring as the days of summer roll into fall, this practice of emotional awareness and verbalizing the hard feelings ought to start to take shape in time.....RIGHT??
On the fall note, Michael's has 3/$10 candles right now in scents like Pumpkin Pancakes (maple drool emoji), Apple Cider, and 'Flannel and Football,' which is hard to explain but it makes this chick who went to high school in the '90s feel some....things?
Anyway, peace unto all of us. Here's to learning to use all of our emotional colors in a way that keeps them off the ceiling and out of each other's eyeballs.