Back To School - the Low Down on the Highs and Lows
I don't know about you, but its been a pretty hectic week of back to school emotions in our world. We've had a school change and our youngest starting school, and the rollercoaster has been real. But you know what... that's very normal.
We are very lucky that our smooth transitions into the schooling environment have been just that... smooth. Our kids are lovers of either school and learning, or social interaction with their peers. So for them, school is a whole ball of fun!!! But what we had somehow forgotten a little, is that we are there safe space. Which means that when we get in the car or get home... they let it all out.
For some kids, they assume super hero status, that is they fly, bounce, jump, move, wiggle, yell, scream, break things and all in all just need to get that out. And this is OK! This is normal for the developing brain. They have been told that they need to be good, listen to the teacher, play nicely etc etc.... and they do this, in spades. They are able to be all the things that we have asked of them... but when they get home, they gotta get that journey out.
The frontal lobe, and particularly the pre-frontal cortex, is trying so hard to regulate behaviour and emotions, and when we are younger than an adult(and lets be honest, for some adults too), its ability to do this is a bit tricky. So the little developing brain is placing a lot of effort and concentration on the prefrontal function, and when an opportunity presents itself that maybe this is a safe space, they let that guard drop and let it OUT!!
Other kids, may be quiet and introspective. Sometimes they want to feel that you are there, and that pushing these kids to tell you how great their day was, who the new friends are, and every small detail... well this can cause them to shut down and push them to the edge. So if they need that time... then that's OK too. This is where the mutual respect of parenting plays out really well. How by honouring their needs in this time, and respecting them and how they need to process their day, then they will come to us when they are ready and be able to express their needs.
So in our house, the kids aren't just one or the other... and I wouldn't expect them to be. They flip flop between these two primal options, and allow their innate to guide their brain function. Being connected to them and their needs, and trusting your gut and intuition, this is key and can help to build beautiful resilient children and parent/child relationships.
We hope that your week is great! And happy back to school!