Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Graduation Day

My son will be graduating from 5th grade this week.  I never realized how depressed and anxious this event would make me.  My little boy is leaving the protective cocoon of his elementary school, a place where he feels safe and where the teachers and staff nurtured and guided him over the last five years.  In a few short months my little boy will be in junior high!  Where did the time go?  It seems like just yesterday that he was playing with his Buzz Lightyear action figure and watching Toy Story for the billionth time!  Speaking of Toy Story, I took my son and one of his friends to see Toy Story 3 this weekend.  Thank goodness for those dark 3-D glasses because they hid my tears while I bawled like a baby during the movie.  I wasn't only crying because it looked as if Woody and Buzz and all their little friends were getting melted down and going to toy heaven, I was also crying because my little boy is growing up and pretty soon he will not want to be caught dead at a movie with his stuffy old mom (who cries at kids movies!)

The days of dance festivals and bake sales are over.  My little boy is not so little anymore.  He is off to junior high where I know a little bit of unhappiness is in store for him.  This is the time when the "clicks" start to form and the kids who you thought were your friends will no longer give you the time of day.  Jessi @ The Musings of a Wannabe Star http://jhaish.blogspot.com/2010/06/best-friends-for-life.html recently posted about life after elementary school.  She states "When I reached middle school..., I was most definitely shell-shocked."  I am afraid that is how my son will feel.  My son is a sensitive soul who loves and accepts everyone.  It kills me to know that soon his peers will be judging him by the clothes her wears, the music he listens to, the kids he hangs out with.  Will he bend to peer pressure and mold himself into the person his peers want him to be?  Or, will he remain the kind, caring, sensitive soul that he has always been and thus, be labeled a "nerd" or whatever the negative term is they use these days?  My heart aches knowing that there is nothing I can do to shield him from this pain.  It is inevitable and everyone goes through it, but it just isn't right.

I don't want to fill his mind with my worries so I keep my mouth shut.  I want him to embrace the idea of starting a new school and be excited about making new friends.  I wish every happiness in the world for him and hope he finds some of that happiness in junior high.

14 comments:

Karen Mortensen said...

Wow. Good luck to him and you. I am sure that with his great mother he will be okay. Just keep those lines opened.

Margo said...

Awww this makes me sad, too. Makes me also think about having my own kids, and frankly, that desire is rapidly diminishing.

Alex said...

I totally understand where you're coming from! I am babysitting this summer, and it has become an interesting pre-parenting exercise that does make me have similar worries to yours for the kids I take care of. Letting them out into the world must be so tough, since you want only positive experiences for them. But I'm sure that having a good relationship with your son/children now will prove beneficial when he encounters the dangerous waters of junior high!

Green Monkey said...

the time goes by sooo quickly. my grandson, who is 9 doesn't want to hold my hand anymore.... :( but I still make him!

cjschlottman said...

This very well written and bittersweet post touched my heart. You nailed it. They have to leave the nest eventually, but don't all mothers really want their kids to stay in grade school forever?

BONNIE K said...

I just watched the end of Mean Girls last night, and your post reminded me of that. I think the good news is that if the nice kids do have a hard time in the middle and/or high school years, nice usually wins out after that and they end up doing well. I'd much rather have a nice kid than a bully.

Jo said...

Hi there! I am so sorry it's taken me so long to come by and visit you (busy life -- you know how that goes; a day turns into a week and so on...) and I want to thank you so much and sincerely for your supportive comments on my blog.

We seem to have so much in common: I'm a vegan, you're a vegetarian, we both advocate animal rights, both love to read and both are surviving financial plagues.

I wish I had some words of wisdom concerning your son entering Jr. High school. I can only speak from personal experience with my own two children (both now adults) where both of their experiences were night & day. Rest easy as it doesn't have to be so frightening -- I truly think it is more so for us as parents than it is for them. Somehow they muddle through and find their way. My son (now 20), if it's any comfort and hope to you, has had the same friends in his life since junior high school and one very good friend since elementary. The day came when they graduated high school and I found myself touched by their formed and still bonded brotherhood.

Now they're all either in college or honing their skills in the world of commerce and it is a delight to see how they went from being boys to being men who were lucky enough to be raised as independent thinkers.

The same will be for you and your son.

He will find his way knowing all along that in the shadows was his Mom rooting for his success.

So happy to be getting to know you!

Again, please forgive my tardiness in stopping by (and my long-windedness -- it's kind of what I do-ha!)!

Much peace, love, serenity, happiness and newfound friendship,
~Jo
"The End Of The Rainbow: Life After Bankruptcy"

Brooklyn Book Lover said...

Thank you all for sharing your experiences with me and for the much appreciated words of wisdom you offered. It was nice coming back from the graduation and seeing all of your comments.

The ceremony was beautiful. We spent the rest of the day together, just enjoying being together as a family. :-)

Storykeeper said...

Your son is going to test his beliefs and learn how to handle difficult people. Unfortunately those lessons aren't easy.

You sound like you have given him a great foundation. I bet you have some great conversations about choices and life.

I came on the hop.
http://windows2mylife.blogspot.com

Audrey said...

My baby is graduating from high school next tuesday! I can't wait!! LOL
I'm actually glad that school days, fighting about homework, trying to remember parent-teacher appointments, etc. are over.
Found your blog through "Over 40 Friday Follow" and I'm following you now!
Have a great weekend.

Nancy Jacobs Basketmaster said...

I just found you from Never Growing Old's Over 40 Blog Hop. I'm enjoying visiting your blog.
Nancy
http://www.howtohomemaker.com/

Gretchen Seefried said...

Sweet post!! I have 5 children and 3 have flown the coop! It is hard but life is good! I am a new follower and going to read some more! We have a Book Flock on my website for women over 40 if you are interested! Would love to have you!
http://www.midchix.com/
Let me know if you need help navigating it!

Gretchen Seefried said...

Forgot to mention there are several places on the site to link up your blog,,,,it is good for free Link Lovin!
http://www.midchix.com/

mbkatc230 said...

I remember those fears all so well. We all want our kids to be happy and healthy and have friends. When our daughter came home in the 5th grade and said she wanted to be in band, I was doing the happy dance. It gave her a built in support system, and a place where it was ok to be a nerd :) And it gave her life skills that she will carry with her for the rest of her life. I'm sure your son will find his own path to happiness, and I pray that the road is not too bumpy! Kat