Ahhh September. Back in July, the summer holidays seem like they might last forever, but September always sneaks up on us way faster than we think. After a wonderful summer, suddenly September and back to school are upon us.
As well as a change in the seasons, September also brings back routine. Having had 6 weeks off with not having to get up at any particular time or worrying too much about what time the kids were going to bed, it all changes. We’re back to clock watching in the morning and me tearing my hair out whilst yelling at the kids to hurry up. We’re back to coming home after school and quickly shoving down some dinner before going off to some kind of club or activity.
I’m sure I say it every year, but September always feels like a huge shock to the system!
New School Routines
My eldest, Alice has just started in Year 3 or Juniors. It’s a bit different – there’s a new entrance for her to go into at school and there’s inevitably more pressure with work. Alice likes a routine, but starting back this past week or so has been a tricky. She has refused to get out of bed in the mornings. Two days ago it took me nearly an hour to get her to get up. This teenage behaviour was driving me mad and making me anxious about leaving the house on time. Every morning I was met with attitude and grumpiness which ended up putting me in a foul mood as well. In the afternoons, she has been tired and strung out and trying to get her to do any reading or homework has been a complete nightmare. It only really dawned on me yesterday that this obnoxious behaviour is probably her way of showing she’s anxious about starting a new school year. In addition to a new classroom, new teacher and new clubs (Brownies) to deal with there’s also the general getting back into the swing of things. When you think about it, it’s no wonder that there can be some “challenging” behaviour to deal with whilst everything settles down.
Eva has seemed a bit more settled, but even she’s had some wobbles going into school in the morning. She shows her anxiety in a different way to Alice and this generally consists of having a tantrum about wearing certain parts of her school uniform!
There’s a new routine for me too because I’ve just started a new part-time job! I’m now working as a Learning Support Assistant at the same primary school that the girls go to. I’ve been looking for a part-time job for a while. Whilst I love the freelance copywriting work, it’s not always plain sailing. I’ve wanted to do something which had more consistency and which would fit in with the family. This job is perfect and whilst I’ve only been there for a week, I’m already loving the new challenges! Because it’s part time, I’m still able to take on copywriting projects as and when they come up.
In terms of new routine and anxiety, I can completely relate to what Alice is going through. Starting anything new, be it a job, school year, activity or club it is daunting, exciting and tiring! I’ve been wiped out with listening, meeting new people and focusing on the new role.
So as we all settle back into routines, new and old, I need to remember that this is an exciting and challenging time and with that comes exciting and challenging behaviour…. for all of us!
Have you got back into the swing of things yet? Do you love a routine or prefer a bit of freedom? I’d love to know!