Dealing With the Back-to-School Blues

This is a gust post by a mom who is learning to face the back-to-school blues.

As a busy mom, I know that the back-to-school season can be one of the most stressful times of the year. From clothes shopping to earlier bed times to packing school lunches, the end of summer is often dreaded by mothers and children alike. This year, back to school is different around our house. One of our kids is venturing off to fulfill their dreams at an east coast law school, while the other one is enrolling in a holistic education program across the country. With so much change happening, I have begun to feel a little overwhelmed. After talking with a friend, I discovered some ways to deal with this hectic season in my life, and to ensure it’s a successful transition for both my kids and I.

Whether your children are in grade school or college, you need to manage your free time. I have come up with a schedule for when my children leave. I know it is going to be very difficult and strange at first, and I definitely wasn’t ready to be an empty nester, but I know that having a set schedule will definitely help. My husband and I have worked out a schedule around his work and my volunteering activities so that we can spend the most quality time together. We plan on traveling a lot, and I am currently planning our first trip in an effort to give my mind something to focus on and distract me from the odd feeling of not having my kids in our home. I also set up my schedule to include activities that I enjoy, such as tennis, running and going to lunch with friends so that I will always have something fun to do!

If your children are in grade school, you may find getting household chores done are easier without little ones around. Schedule your time to allow for errands, TV (we all know over the summer kids hog the TV) or work around the house. Instead of focusing on the children being away from home, use this time to accomplish all those things you could not over the summer.

Another very important step in this process is to set up a way to communicate with your children if they are going to a school far away. Both my children have laptops and we have agreed on a video chat conversation once a week. This way, my husband and I can talk with our kids and actually see their faces. We don’t want to be overbearing parents, but we desperately love and miss our kids so we want to at least be able to check in with them once a week or so. Set up a communication system, whether it’s email, video chat, Facebook, telephone calls, etc., so that you can keep in touch and see what’s going on with them. It’s definitely not as good as if they were in the same room, but it still helps when you’re missing them!

How will you deal with your children heading off to college or school?

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