Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Summer Break is Over

I always get a tad melancholy whenever my son has to go back to school.  It has been 10 months since my son was accepted and the county agreed to have him attend school away from home.  While intellectually we know it is the best place for him to get an education, emotionally it still takes it toll, especially on me.

When we first began this journey, I wanted to go with him every time we took him back to school, and I wanted to go with my wife to pick him up whenever he had a scheduled break to come home.  My office was very willing to work with us to allow that to happen, however, we eventually decided that I did not need to go to pick him up.  This way, I could build up my leave in order to be able to take a family vacation like we did in August.

We soon discovered that my son was very much in tune to my normal work schedule.  He knew that it was normal for me to be home on the weekends.  He also knew it was not normal for me to be home during the work week.  Consequently, if I stayed home on a Tuesday he knew it meant he was going back to school.  He would refuse to get off the ground.  We would try tricking him by having me leave and go somewhere until my wife gave me the sign that he was in the car.

After a couple of wasted days off where we could not get him back to school, we eventually came to the decision that I would go into work on the days he went back to school and my wife would try to get him back to school on her own.  So far, that has actually worked fairly well.  She has been able to get him back to school on time, though she has had to resort to a little trickery and/or deceit to do it.

As I said, I always get a little bit down when he goes back to school.  Yesterday, however, I was moping around the office a bit more than usual.  I don't know if I was more tired than usual, which certainly could have contributed to my malaise.  The big part of it is that I did not get to say goodbye to him before he went back.  Yesterday, he was still sleeping when I left for work.  A lot of times, he is awake and I can at least tell him I will see him later, even if it is a few weeks later. 

I suppose I should dwell on the positives.  In the past 10 months we have seen some improvements that we had not seen previously, though we still have a long way to go in a lot of areas.  I could also think about how much easier it is around the house when he is at school, and how I have the freedom to watch what I want on television or do what I want on the computer because he isn't around to take those things over.  Or perhaps I feel guilty because I do think about those things.
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  1. You can be sad you didn't get to say goodbye to your son, but as you said he is making improvements so in your heart you know you are doing the right thing. I've found out there is always guilt in parenting, so get over the fact you have a chance to watch tv or use the computer, because the next time you see him, your son might have achieved another goal!!!

  2. Dick- I think some separate time is good for both of you. That doesn't mean you love him less.

  3. Having kids is the hardest, most emotional job we have. Today I am beating myself up because my son was assaulted and had his bike stolen on the two block trip home from school. He is in a panic and I can't soothe him. Sometimes I just want to lock my kids up in the house with me forever, but I know I'd be doing more harm than good. I'm glad you guys are figuring out a way to get him back into school - probably best just to keep things as normal as possible.

  4. thanks all. just checked in on him at the dorm. he was in the shower and then getting ready to watch football.



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