portraits of the jersey shore challenges of a middle school daughter-

Challenges of a Middle School Daughter

“Nicole is eleven and going into middle school. She makes friends really easily, so I am not worried about that. She actually made some friends over the summer that happen to be going to the same school. But I worry about her adjusting to a completely different school. There are no more pajama days in middle school. She has to get her own things from her own locker, and she has to switch classes on her own, and I just worry about her transitioning. I think she will be fine, but I still worry.

“I try to maintain a balance between work and family. The company I work for is big on work-life balance. They let me have time off when I need it for my family. But just getting up in the mornings trying to get ready for work, while also getting Nicole ready for school, then having an hour commute to be at work by 8:30, and then getting home in time to have dinner with my daughter and my husband…I am running around like crazy. But my husband and I split it 50/50, and we help each other out.

“The challenge for me at the end of the day, is wondering, ‘Am I a good enough mother? Am I doing all the things I should be doing? Am I getting stressed out too much?’ And that comes from having to work and everything that goes with it. It crosses my mind, ‘Am I doing the right things for her? Does she feel like I am doing the right things for her? How is she going to look back and remember me?’ But I tell her I love her every single day. Every time she gets out of the car. Every night before she goes to sleep she tells me she loves me, and she’ll walk around the house singing, ‘I love my mommy.’ But I know she is entering those years where she will probably hate me. So I am savoring these days. But we are so close. I know the relationship we have, we are going to have it forever.”

~ Seaside Park

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