Tag Archives: anxiety

Cue the Tears

My unexcited son manages a thumbs up as he holds his acceptance envelope.

When my older son received his acceptance to the University of Texas at San Antonio three years ago, there was a tiny, nagging thought in the back of my ever-Tefloning brain:

I’ll be repeating this scene before long.

Showing even less enthusiasm (gotta love the Cookie Monster wristband, though)

Sure enough, it was little bro’s turn yesterday to hold up his big envelope for me to photograph. This one was from Sam Houston State; a couple weeks ago he had opened a regular-sized envelope with his acceptance from the University of Houston. Two applications, two yesses. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

Reading his acceptance letter

But, of course, it wasn’t. For awhile, we wondered if the kid was even going to make it out of high school, as he battled his severe school anxiety that started the second semester of his sophomore year. The twin horrors of homebound school and online high school had us reeling until my son righted his ship with medication and returned to his public school second semester junior year.

This first semester of his senior year started out rocky for the first two weeks, but he hasn’t missed any classes since. Of course, even when the waters seem smooth, the Mister and I are forever on our guard for wobbles and waves that could capsize our son’s journey. We are battle-worn but ready.

He’s in!

All of which just added to my tears when I read the kid’s college acceptances. Yes, it does mean that my beloved baby boy will be moving out and on with his life, as the Mister and I face an empty nest for the first time. I know I’ll miss my younger son as much as I do his older brother. They are my life.

But, more importantly, it reminded me of how this kid fought for his normalcy and to keep up with his schoolwork so he wouldn’t fall behind. He never gave up. How even though it’s been difficult at times to sit in his classes, he hangs in there, because he knows his future is bright and worth fighting for. I am so proud of him.

Hey, Sam Houston State! Say hello to your newest bearkat!

Congratulations to my brave big little boy. You are and always will be my hero!

Tough Times

I need the calming feeling that clouds can bring.

This has been an extremely awful, stressful week for us as we try to cope with my younger son’s severe school anxiety issues. He’s been out of high school trying to cope more than he’s been in class learning and enjoying his senior year.

Here’s hoping that the weekend has a cleansing effect on all of our emotions, which have been rubbed raw right now. We all desperately need a break.

Ready for 2011 to End

Almost time to gladly turn the page.

I have two words to say to 2011: Good riddance!

This has been my toughest year as a parent . . . possibly my hardest year ever, and it all relates to my younger son’s anxiety problem. That psychosomatic issue has kept him homebound and in online high school his junior year (so far). No aspect of it has been positive for our family. The stress on all of us has been off the charts.

I’m sure that eventually I’ll conclude that this sad, often-heartbreaking journey has made us all stronger. Couldn’t calcium pills accomplish the same thing, though?

My #2 son poses with his holiday Cookie Monster goodies.

We’ve found online high school to be extremely difficult, especially for an unmotivated boy. I think only two percent of high school students can be successful with this way of “learning” . . . and they’re all girls. I put the “learning” in quotes, because without a physical teacher, it’s hard to become competent in one subject let alone six of them.

Here’s a quick update as we blissfully end 2011 and look forward to a happier, healthier 2012 for my younger son:

• He’s almost ready to take his driving test. The trusty, old (1999) Mercury Villager sits waiting for him in our driveway.

• He’s completed four of his online courses. He needs to finish his Physics work and take finals in that class and U.S. History.

• He’s going to return to his old high school next week for second semester. Not that he wants to go back, but the Mister and I think it’s what’s best for him. Our job as parents is to guide our children, to embrace their strengths. We feel like we’re enabling his weakness when we let him stay home instead of facing his fear. We know it’ll be tough for him, and he might even hate us . . . for now. But one of my biggest regrets this year has been not fighting to keep him at his public high school for the fall semester; I don’t plan to make that mistake again.

• We’ve found a wonderful psychiatrist who has prescribed anti-depression medication that seems to be lifting his spirits (it’s supposed to lessen his negative thoughts and anxiety). He still won’t talk to a therapist, but at least he’s taken one big step towards getting back to his old self.

And, oh, do we miss my younger son’s old self! He was warm, bubbly, happy, almost always seeing the glass as overflowing. His eyes were bright with possibilities, and he always made us smile. Those grins have been in short supply in 2011. Let’s hope positivism rules our family’s world in 2012!

Happy New Year!

Run for a Reason

Listen to Pac-Man (he gobbles up cancer cells)!

Looking for a great tax-deductible cause as 2011 comes to a close? How about contributing to my fundraising effort? As I’ve noted before, I’m running the January 15th Aramco Half Marathon in honor of my friends Sheri and Janet E., who are battling breast cancer. Just click on the link below and help the Susan G. Komen Foundation make a difference: