I'm not unskilled in the Middle School years. I've already had two go through it, but as I embark on my twins starting the seventh grade, I seem to be a bit more hesitant. They are MUCH smaller than my other boys were. Physically, they are just little boys. The thing is, I know what Middle School does to these kids.
Seventh grade they walk in all timid and scared. This is the big time. Lockers. Different teachers. Lots of teachers. Oh, and a whole lot of kids they don't know. Yeah, my boys are lucky. Between Hockey and Karate, they do know a lot of people they didn't go to school with before. However, it doesn't make it any less scary.
I'm going to see them walking next to BIG eighth graders and think they just aren't ready. I'm going to hold them when the struggles of being overwhelmed hit. And I'm going to watch them grow into future eighth graders.
A funny thing happens when a young man hits eighth grade. They have a growth spurt that puts them eye to eye with you. Their voice begins to sound very foreign. In some cases you'll keep trying to wipe their upper lip because they are dirty, but it's hair.
It's an amazing time these kiddos are headed for. They will meet people that will shape their lives. They will say goodbye to some of their favorite friends as they outgrow them too.
I'm not sure how, as parents, we are supposed to accept all the changes that come at this time. But, somehow we are programmed to get through it. Emerging on the other side of middle school are enhanced versions of our little ones. Young men and ladies walk away to high school--and we're ready.
It's a rocky ride. I won't lie. But don't blink! It'll be the fastest two years of your life, even if it seems to drag on for them.
Bernadette Marie TODAY #ParentingTeam Contributor
author of This House of Boys blog