OMG can you believe that your little baby, the one that kept you up at night, chewed the dog’s toy, painted with mud, cried during the Lion King, bit the neighbor’s cat, and vowed that they would never, ever eat sushi is GRADUATING FROM HIGH SCHOOL!
Ok – so you probably don’t know what is real and what is emotional. After all, you’ve been incubating this human for almost two decades! So what’s next – well, maybe college.
Here’s some stuff to remember this summer before you send your little social experiment out into the big world of HIGHER EDUCATION!
Mama Tip #1: It ain’t over! So here’s the deal. People talk/act/pretend that sending your kid to college means releasing them into the harsh reality of adulthood. That’s just crazy! This is still your kid and will be forEVER! Now – having said that – hopefully you’ve been working on the skills that they’ll need to make THE FIRST STEP out of the nest. Maybe you’ve taught them to do their laundry without wrecking their clothes. Maybe you’ve really outdone yourself and they can balance a checkbook! Wherever your kid is in the developmental process of taking responsibility for themselves, this summer can be a time to impart your wisdom without losing your mind. Don’t overload them, but don’t unwhealm them either. Giving your kid more responsibility without the PANIC BOMB of screaming at them “WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WHEN YOU GET TO COLLEGE” is your mission this summer.
Mama Tip #2 – Trust your Gut! You know this kid better than anyone! Don’t let anyone tell you what you’re supposed to be doing.
Advice is one thing – but now’s not the time to let anyone SHOULD all over you. Not your Mom – “when you went to college….” Not your the mail/email that you receive from their college – checklist for new freshman! And definitely not the media – “Top Ten Party Schools Uncovered!!!”
Remember – this is your kid – get honest with yourself about what can reasonably be expected, stretch it by 10% just for giggles, and then proceed as you will – CAUSE YOU REALLY KNOW WHAT’S GOING ON.
Mama Tip #3 – Give yourself permission to continue.
Here’s the equation
YOUR KID + ROCK SOLID INFO + MAMA BEAR IN THEIR CORNER = BEGINNER’S COLLEGE CONFIDENCE!
People will tell you to cut the apron strings, set them free, let go and let God. Ok - so you know that the relationship is evolving – but you are still the Mama. This is NOT the time to let your little birdy leave the nest with the thought that they have now entered adulthood and can make all their decisions from now on without you. They may think that, but inside they really don’t feel that – or at least they won’t feel that when they have an issue with their roommate OR find out that college Chemistry is a lot harder than high school Chemistry OR when they have money stolen out of their dorm room OR when their car breaks down on the way home for Thanksgiving.
The truth is, they still need your help – and they might actually need you WAY MORE during the first year of college than they did their Senior Year of High School. So there’s a few nuggets to put in your Mama Bank. If you need more reminders of what you are doing right, follow me on twitter @Go2CollegeCoach OR Put Me in Your LIFE TRIBE by visiting www.GoToCollegeCoach.Com .