Managing Monday’s: The Last School Push

Managing Monday’s: The Last School Push

The kids have eleven and a half more days of school. They make it seems like a whole year. “I am so done with class, why do we even have to go?” “The last day of school is pointless, why bother” they say in voices of two-year olds. I smile a rueful smile. I remember these days. I remember feeling much the same way, but now I am the parent, and I am finding that I am going to need a cattle brander to get our kids through these last weeks.

Isaac, my junior who always skates the fine line between an A and B is once again bringing my stress level up to new heights. These are the grades that will make a big difference for his college choices. These are the grades that even in his weight lifting class he is borderline A or B. Really? At what point to I just let go? Hey all you wise parents out there, with kids that made it to college, is now the time to lay off or do I ride him for the next two weeks grounding him from everything but school and his basketball practices? Will it make a difference?

For John, my sophomore, it is about not adding anything to his plate. Excusing him from chores, saying as little as possible and making sure he has enough food. John will be up every night for the next two weeks until 3 AM to get his work done and finish strong. I added a orthodontist appointment and was yelled at. Keep the peace, stay out-of-the-way and let him sleep for a week when school is out.

The younger two, both freshman, the end is not as crucial. Jessie will finish strong and though a bit more moody, she will finish with a 4.0. Christian will do his best and complain mildly about it, but will be kept very busy with football and basketball practices starting tomorrow. If he is busy, and gets to play basketball he is happy.

As with all important matters pertaining to our children, remembering they are individuals who have different love languages and different motivators helps. I can not treat Isaac with the kid gloves I choose for John. Christian will not respond to negative reactions. With a bit of innovation, and energy, I can see a light at the end of yet another school year. The last school push, may the force be with us all.


3 Comments so far
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So here’s my two cents:

That was Annie and me. I’d push, push, push to get her to where I thought she should be; where I wanted her to be. What I eventually learned is I can’t make her want what I want for her, even if it is for her own good.

I guess I’d say these are Isaac’s grades and his college plans. If he doesn’t care if he gets a B instead of an A, and if he doesn’t earn the grades he needs for a certain school he’s targeting, then he experiences the consequences of not being able to go there. That’s how life works.

In the final analysis, it’s up to him. When we so strongly try and dominate, all they can see is us. If you “get out of the way” maybe Isaac will better be able to see himself and his role in the outcomes of his choices. While there’s no guarantee things will change if you do back off, it’s crazy weird what sometimes happens when we stop pushing and stop trying to force outcomes. If nothing else, he’ll sure wonder what you’re up to!

Comment by Barb Stoefen

Hi again. I just reread my comment and didn’t mean for it to sound so preachy and harsh! Geezzz, so sorry. You know I had some big lessons to learn and I get kinda over zealous in sharing that info. Anyway, I know you want only the best for Isaac and want to see him achieve his potential. He’s a super bright guy and it must be exasperating to watch him settle for B’s when you know he’s capable of an A+. All I meant to say is that when we moms push, even if for all the right reasons, it really doesn’t effect any change in our kids. They just react to us. When we extract ourselves from the mix, they can’t hate us for nagging anymore and are more inclined to see themselves. Maybe : )

Comment by Barb Stoefen


First your comments are always so wonderful and the fact that you read my blog and take the time to offered any sort of advice is awesome. I thought what you had to say was perfect and I know the filters through which you see and so it did not feel preachy. I love you and love that you are in my life

Comment by Kari

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