Notes from yesterday (first day of school)

05:20 [2019-09-02] Orion hangs in the south, a hand’s breadth above the horizon. The other constellations I vaguely recognize, but can never quite remember, it seems, no matter how many times I reference them. The big and little dippers are low on the north side of the house, I suppose; I can’t see them.

The fact that Orion is visible is that sure sign that fall has begun and winter is on its way. So far I don’t mind. But then, the temperature is still balmy, this morning. We’ve just had a mini heat-wave.

Today I bring W to school, to his new school for the first time. Finally my fears have dropped away (— until I wrote that, which caused a small pit of worry very deep low in my body). Finally (before I wrote that) I was starting to feel good about it, this morning, starting to feel that this was after all the right choice, he doesn’t seem afraid, his friend will be with him after all, he seems matter of fact about it, sweet baby bird, and I begin to think, ahhh, it will be nice, to have this bit of space from each other, after all, perhaps, no more arguing every single night, me telling him to put away the tech… he doesn’t do homework here. There, for four nights per week, he will be in a very structured rhythm from morning to night and the school theoretically manages it all, including homework time. He’s a good kid, and — lucky for him — a tall and strong kid, and I have preached to him endlessly that he must remember to use that strength for good, for the good of others, so what more can I do? It seems baby is somewhat leaving the nest, at the ripe old age of 15, as what seems to be the norm in this incredibly adulting country we seem to have adopted as our own.

Maybe that would have been better for me, if something like that had happened for me, when I was 15. To take responsibility as though I were nearly an adult, instead of regress into childhood.

Where did I read that just recently? That depending where you were in life in your state of consciousness you will react to life happenings by moving backward or forward. Back then, I certainly moved backward. I moved into drugs and alcohol, yes all right in a very light way compared to a couple of my peers, perhaps, but still that’s the direction I moved into. I suppose it was the incident. Or maybe it was high school. Or maybe it was as far back as grade 7, my last year of primary. The awfulness of certain peers or their treatment of me, and how I took it. Also the input and influence of my best friend and her elder sister, magazines, books, music… So going into high school, at age 13, my subconscious decided that being the quintessential good student didn’t pay. Now it was time to “be cool.” Which was, in essence a regression, and the opposite of what it seemed. It was, in effect, being uncool. It was actually being a follower of a different kind, not truly a rebel as I’d so sanctimoniously thought.

Oh please dear angels, look after W, keep his heart pure and true, let him continue to be as clear-headed about certain things as he is, let him find friends there but let the friends only be a better influence on him, oh never mind I don’t know what to wish for, but let him be aware, brave and kind.

====

06:10 I worry. I worry about not warning kids about possible dangers, then sometimes I do these awkward parent talks that all the “experts” say you should do, then I think I may have made it worse by interfering — by putting things upon the screens of their minds.

I remember that from my own youth. Some dangers would never have crossed my mind (nor later become an obsession) if I hadn’t been endlessly warned about them by well-meaning school officials, TV advertisements and so on. Then those very same dangers (eating disorders, smoking, drinking, doing drugs) became an exciting, fascinating focus. It’s a fine line between arming someone with knowledge, and giving them a weapon with which to harm themselves (and/or others, for that matter).

side thought: what if the adults had instead spent that precious time warning about the dangerous, addictive nature of writing? Of playing piano? Of jogging? Of drawing and painting? I wonder what my focus would have been, then? lol.

notes to self: expect beautiful and good things. Or focus on those at least. Don’t act out of some twisted fear of “what if so-and-so’s-imaginary-future-fall-from-grace-into-such-and-such would have been my fault because I didn’t tell him/her.” Kids need to know stuff, yes, but most of all, they need to know that you trust them and that you trust the Universe. Then they themselves will act from a base of security within themselves. I hope.

I’d had an awkward talk about random awkward stuff on the way home from the city with W on Saturday. It went as non-awkwardly as possible, which was still pretty awkward. After going through the basics (which of course he already knows; we have answered questions about the basics as they arise, since earliest childhood) I finally rounded up, after the awkward-ish silence that ensued, by saying:

“do you ever wonder about [random awkward stuff] ”

“yes”

long pause

“what do you wonder”

“um. I guess… I wonder what’s the point…”

i.e. some folks are still innocent.

it’s not my job as a parent to take innocence away from them just so no one else can take it from them. That never works. Ultimately they have their own lives to live.

please god let my kids be aware, brave and kind. And let them feel loved and supported by their parents.

no matter what.

===

(That was Day 159)
(p.s. the reference about consciousness had been someone quoting Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now: “The best indicator of your level of consciousness is how you deal with life’s challenges when they come. Through those challenges, an already unconscious person tends to become more deeply unconscious, and a conscious person more intensely conscious. You can use a challenge to awaken you, or you can allow it to pull you into even deeper sleep. The dream of ordinary unconsciousness then turns into a nightmare.”)

 

5 thoughts on “Notes from yesterday (first day of school)

  1. Interesting post. I think, as someone who worked in schools for 37 years, that a lot of young people lack resilience. They seem to get knocked back easily and in some way I think it’s because collectively we have sometimes overprotected youngsters. Growing up needs to be safe but it also means having freedom to make choices, sometimes mistakes and then finding solutions and ways of managing the tough times. That’s how you can build resilience. Without that freedom to make mistakes many young people simply can’t cope when life does inevitably become tough. Oops sorry time to get off the high horse. Good post, it’ll get people thinking!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. This is super helpful to me right now… my kid is really happy there he says, via SMS. But his friend is not, and wants to go home already. That means my kid will probably want to come home as well. Differences: his friend always had his own room with tons of privacy. My four sons, after babyhood, have always shared a room, dormitory style. So this dorm situation is actually an upgrade for him in some ways (now he is with same age kids, whom he seems to be getting along with). I’m a huge coddler but my husband is the opposite.

      It’s good to have this input right now since I’m going to visit my son this afternoon. Thanks for putting your two cents in! :))

      Like

  2. Being a parent is the hardest thing I have ever done. I look back and think I did all I could do, but then, I also see all I could have done differently. I worry about their welfare today just like I did when they were younger. We never get released from this duty. As a mother, your words pricked my heart. Hang in there mama bird.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Stacy… thank you so much for this. *Your words,* in return, made my heart feel so hugged and comforted and appreciated. I think you must be a pretty awesome mama. Thank you for these words I think I needed to hear.
      By the way I saw him this afternoon and he is doing so awesome, he’s so content… I hope it will continue that way. xoxo Nadine.

      p.s. I wrote a post as you were commenting here and I just realized I didn’t add you to the blog list in that post! I knew I would manage to miss someone out one way or another! I’m so sorry! I’m going to add you. xoxoxo

      Liked by 1 person

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