Letting Go 2007

by Marianne Richmond on August 24, 2007


sam07firstday2.jpgSam started High School yesterday….and far be it for me to say something trite like, it seems like only yesterday…but it does. And I can’t help but wonder, are we both ready for this? I know, I know its only high school; college will be where you will really have to let go.

Letting go? So I just wrote about helicopter parents last week. I didn’t raise the issue then, but of course I secretly wondered…am I a helicopter parent? Well Sam would probably answer that in the affirmative with that little eye roll and smirk that he started developing this summer whenever I would ask, “Who is going? Are {insert name} parents going to be home?”

We actually used to talk…as in conversation; two way, back and forth. Now he seems to be trying to perfect providing the least amount of information possible in the fewest words. This has caused me to try and perfect the art of asking every combination of questions possible regarding a certain event or issue so that the one thing that I didn’t ask is the one that really matters. The one that another parent asks the next day in the context of, “You didn’t know that they….”
OK, I have been through this once before with his older brother, but Sam is my baby. The dynamic is slightly different.
Last Friday we both attended what the invitation said was “Grade 9 Orientation For Students and Parents.” Yes, there more than a few helicopter parents in the room; but then again, this is a helicopter school.

We received several handouts. One was titled “Starting Upper School: Helping Your Teen Adjust.” I think it must have been written by Mrs Rayburn from Leave it to Beaver.

Some highlights:

“Don’t forget that your teen too, is about to enter or has already begun puberty.” Puberty? Oh, hadn’t noticed.

“AND IMPORTANTLY : Do not forget that despite their age, teenagers still need parental affection, love, guidance, and support.” Memo to parents, love your children.

Okay, so as Nordette Adams at Blogher said at the end of her post on helicopter parents,

“What’s going on here is simple: People worry too much. Sometimes you just need to have faith and let go.”

Well, I am not sure I am ready to let go. But I do know one thing, a very positive thing occurred this evening.


Sam handed me this note. A post it note. What’s the big deal? Well, today is Thursday. He doesn’t need the shoes he is referring to until Monday but he is letting me know now. With a note written on a post.

In the past, I would have heard about the shoes on Sunday night, after the stores had closed or on Monday morning on the way to school; even on a phone a few minutes after I dropped him off . And he wouldn’t have known whether he needed new shoes or whether his old shoes fit…and he wouldn’t have been able to find them anyway.

This was a big day.


Yay Sam…way to go!

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