I live in a house of boys. I have two sons: Malcolm, who is age 5, Reid, who is seventeen-months-old, and my husband Chris, a relatively grown up man of 32. I refer to all three of them as my boys because, well, they are!
Malcolm and his dad are very similar people: both of them love video games (I do too!), both of them enjoy playing with the newest type of technology and both of them are painfully shy when it comes to new situations and new people.
Chris has had the same job for eight years and Malcolm has had the same daily routine for the last five years with a few adjustments here and there.
Malcolm is currently chock-full of attitude and giving me grief that I wasn’t expecting for the next ten years. Chris is a bundle of nerves as he embarks on his greatest life-change.
Come September, both my boys are going to school.
As a mom, and wife, I’m pretty nervous for them, but I have to play it off like I’m totally in control.
I recently went shopping for some school supplies for Malcolm and found myself suddenly realizing I’ll need them for Chris too!
For Malcolm, he needs his lunch kit, a pencil case, maybe some crayons and pencils. He has a school bag already: the coolest bag on wheels that’s designed to look like a Mini with the Union Jack on the roof. Right now that bag is filled with spare clothes, splash pants (it’s Spring now!), sunscreen and other random assortments.
Come August, I’ll need to empty it out and figure out what a kindergarten child takes to school. Will he still need some spare clothes? Can’t hurt, right? Will he have space for his lunch and his supplies? I’m trying not to think about it.
For Chris, he has a lunch kit already and we have some pens lying around the house. He has a backpack but I think he wants a new one. He won’t need to carry spare clothes but he’ll need a pencil case and supplies. He’ll need a backpack that can fit a laptop because that’s what he wants. He shouldn’t need splash pants but you never know!
Coming up in June we have a “Welcome to Kindergarten” event at my son’s school that I will be taking time off to attend.
I’m pretty sure Chris’ college program has an Orientation but we haven’t received any information about that yet. And besides, I don’t think moms go to that one.
I wonder how they will do. How will my painfully shy boys do in this new environment that they haven’t experienced before?
Malcolm did a year at Junior Kindergarten which sort of got him ready for the format of school, but unfortunately it’s been a year since he did that.
Chris attended a year of university after high school and completed a program from a private school but that was at least ten years ago or more.
Will they be okay? Will they get along with their classmates? Will Malcolm speak up when he has a problem? Will Chris go crazy being surrounded by teenagers? Will they be teased? Will they make friends?
As much as I worry about these things, I’m not going to be there with them. All I can do is teach them both the survival skills they’ll need as they go forward with their lives and see them off with a smile. I can listen to them talk about their days and highlight the good.
Secretly, I’m hoping that when Malcolm realizes his dad is going to school too and that he likes it (even if Dad has to fake it), that will take away some of the uncertainty of school for him.
Until September comes around I’ll spend the summer trying to teach them both about school and get them both mentally ready to face this new chapter in our lives.
*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Parent Life Network or their partners.