Getting Past The First Two Weeks

“I promised myself I wouldn’t let them see me cry. I know they are going to be just fine.”

Does this sound anything like the thoughts you were having when you were leaving your student at school? It was hard, wasn’t it? For some, you’re returning to an empty house. No more having to wake them in the morning, no more hearing the television late at night, and no more worrying about their safety when they were late for curfew. For others, you may have other children in the house, but that doesn’t really matter, does it? You’ve had a routine for so long, breaking it seems weird and unfamiliar. The good thing – every day gets better.

The First Call

One of the main things to do when you get that very first call is to remain upbeat, no matter how you are feeling. Your student needs to know that you’re okay – so they can be okay. They also need to know they can talk to you if they are having a hard time adjusting. As parents, we’re supposed to be supportive, with nerves of steel, right? Now is the time to be that person. You can cry about it later (and never tell them about it).

Your support and caring conversations are greatly appreciated. They often reflect on those conversations, even when you don’t think they do. As parents, we don’t give it a second thought – we’re programmed to be a parent for the rest of their lives, and that’s what parents do. One of the greatest feelings in the world is when they come back years later and say thank you (in most cases, they will.)

Dealing with the First Visit

Now comes the hard part – you’ve got a few weeks before Parents Weekend, and you’re wondering how you’re going to get through it. In many cases, your students are feeling the same way. Even if they have somewhat adjusted, if you’re a doting mom or dad, you may embarrass them. They will be happy to see you, but let them demonstrate their independence, just a little. They will appreciate you taking them grocery shopping, going out to dinner and all those other little things, but they are still getting to know their surroundings. Give them the space to show you what they’ve learned.

When it’s time to go, be strong like you were when you left them at school. This time, it should be easier. Before you know it, they will be home for the holidays, relishing their time at home. Take some pictures, make some memories, and enjoy the time you have together. The good thing is, those first two weeks will be a distant memory and you’ll be looking forward to their next visit home.