Dealing With Separation Anxiety
The first day of school. It’s a terrifying thought for the little kids going to school for the first time. You see them with their anxious faces, tightly clinging to their moms.
Experts call it separation anxiety. Fortunately for me, I didn’t experience that with my son. When I took him to school for the first time, he went inside without a glance in my direction. I guess, all those “mom and me” classes we took helped him adjust easily. That and his outgoing personality.
If anyone was suffering from separation anxiety, it was me. Admittedly, I wasn’t too happy with the school’s policy of not allowing parents to stay inside the classroom even during the first day. The most that we were allowed to do was watch from the window for the first 15 minutes.
I didn’t know how to tell the school officials that it wasn’t my son I was worried about. It was me who needed reassurance. I wanted and needed to know what my son was going to do for the next three hours of that morning, hours that he usually spent with me.
Before he started school, my son and I had our own routine. After breakfast, we’d usually play together or do some activities. We’d listen and march along to music. Or play hide and seek. We’d do some arts and craft until it was time for lunch. Then, I’d give him his bath and brush his teeth before I’d leave for work.
During those first few weeks, I felt lost. After I dropped him off at school, I’d sit on the couch and watch TV till it was time to pick him up again.
That first week of school was the first time I realized my son will leave home someday. It’s a painful reality I had to accept and prepare for.
And it started that first week.