My Planner

(Kelli! I’m sorry! That title is another misleading one! This one is not about actual paper planners! :))

Nikki is a planner. I have no idea where she gets it from (insert sarcastic scoff here) but she feels much better about EVERYTHING if she knows what is going to happen when and what she has to wear and where she has to be and who is going to be there and what they are going to be doing and…and…you get the point.

Unfortunately, it’s not always in our power to know everything.

(That sounded vaguely philosophical.)

And…when you are going to school in a really small magnet program that is only in it’s second year, you don’t always have answers to your questions. This is exactly what we found out yesterday at orientation for Nikki’s school year. Not only was the locker thing really stressful (do you remember how difficult combination locks seem at first?) but there were no printed schedules yet and they’re changing the way they do PE so the rules either aren’t clear or aren’t established and…and…well, you get the point.

Needless to say, this is stressing her out. It’s stressing me out too since we are cut from the same cloth, but I’m trying to be a grown-up (trying) and helping her out. I’m reminding her over and over that NO ONE will know what’s going on the first day. This will also be her first year bussing to school, and that just feels mysterious a little bit since she’s never done it. And you know…JUNIOR HIGH. It’s just all overwhelming.

So we’re going to be as prepared for all of the situations as possible, like packing several different clothing items for PE. We’re going to buy something like a bracelet or something to spin or play with in case we need to center ourselves if it all just seems to be too much. We’re going to have our notebook ready to write anything down that we need to buy that we didn’t know about so we can do that IMMEDIATELY after school. (I PROMISED HER IMMEDIATELY.) And we’ll have our flip phone for emergency contact needs.

Anxiety and middle school are a bad combination, even on the BEST DAYS, so here’s to trying to manage it the best way possible when school starts next week.

8 thoughts on “My Planner”

  1. I feel like a broken record and don’t want to appear pushy but I read an article like this and I can’t help but think about how that girl has fine functioning amygdala 🙂 EFT has helped me so much to understand how the brain is working under stress. I love EFT so much because it appeals to the basic biology of stress to me and that by tapping on the acupressure points you are re-wiring your brain. You have to be smarter than your stress 🙂
    Even simply teaching her to tap on the “karate chop” point area when she’s alone for a minute and saying some affirmation that speaks to her might help her brain slow down a minute.
    Lots of new studies out about how EFT is dramatically helping people with PTSD–check it out !
    SO, SO glad to read your posts again 🙂

  2. Maybe the best you can do is find out when info will be available. When can we get the schedule? What is the bus schedule? Will the PE rules be available the first day of PE. I would expect that shirt and shorts would be okay the first day. They can’t expect kids to obey rules they don’t know. Get a lock and practice , so she knows the basic way to open a lock. I had to try to teach this to my husband over the phone a few years ago when he couldn’t open the safe. it went like this- turn the dial 2 times to the left, then go to the 1st number, turn a full turn right then go to the second number, turn left to the 3rd number. He kept wanting to know about 0’s. I said finally forget the damn 0’s. Okay in the second step you pas a 0, in the 3rd step you don’t. Voila- it opened!!!!!!

  3. YES! My brother has clinical anxiety and was not diagnosed until he was 18. Things got markedly worse for him in middle school because of exactly the kinds of things you outline here. It is SO GOOD that you are aware of this and proactively working on. <3

  4. We bought a combo lock and had our new middle schooler practice at home often. Trying to minimize that anxiety -even though it would be a different combo- really helped us…

  5. And now I’m going to have my “skipped class all year and now can’t find the room where the final exam is” nightmare tonight!

  6. 🙂

    Honestly, I think it is awesome that you are teaching her so many ways to approach the “not knowing” and also, the coping mechanisms for her anxiety. These are things I wish I would have learned at an earlier age, rather than figuring them myself. You are awesome, Kim!

  7. Yeah, I just had the “wait, when did I sign up for Russian? and why is the Final the first time I’m going to class” nightmare this week.

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