Dear Mom and Dad of Middle Schoolers,
This summer, I’m passing the torch to you. My youngest of four graduated from middle school. A big ceremony at school, kids dressed in their first formal wear, with mom and dad cheering in the background.
“We made it!”
The transition from childhood to adolescence is a celebration for parents as much as it is for kids. Some of us cheer because our child made it through junior high, somewhat unscathed. Some of us sigh, wearily, because we feel like we’ve been through World War 3. We hope high school can’t be any worse.
Some of us celebrate because we’ve seen our awkward little ones grow into young men and women, who physically morphed before our eyes. Some of us cry, like me, because it’s your last child to leave this momentous phase of life.
Some cultures and religions have a huge ceremony as children walk through the twelve-to-fifteen years. A rite of passage, it’s called. Surely, it is. Americans don’t acknowledge the importance of this age. Instead, we approach it with fear and dread; anticipating the drama, hyperactivity, and hormones. With my last child leaving this stage behind, this is what I leave to you, from a parent whose been in the middle school trenches the last twelve years.
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