12 thoughts I had as a parent at high school orientation

12 thoughts I had as a parent at high school orientation

High school class registration is underway in our local school district. That means that hundreds of kids and parents filled the seats of the high school auditorium for the first of several orientation sessions.

Here are some of the thoughts I had as a parent at high school orientation for my daughter.

1. Parenting feels a lot like time travel, because I swear kindergarten orientation was just a few weeks ago.

2. Oh look, there's door 34. I'm glad we left early so we had time to find the correct entrance. I think my high school had three doors, maybe four, but I'm pretty sure I used just one most of the time.  I suspect I'll figure out my way around this place about three weeks before graduation. Maybe.

3. Was the child just smiling and nodding to humor me when I reassured her, "You'll find your way around here in no time, don't worry." Or did she really believe me?

4. There's a wide range of emotions on display here, from both kids and parents. Some look frightened, others are look gleeful. Some just look confused. I'm feeling a little of all of it, so I wonder what I look like.

5. The principal is talking slowly, in modulated tones. The more zen he sounds, the more parents seem to sit back a little and settle into their seats, rather than sit tensely on the edge. Wise man.

6. When the dean said that flexibility is important, was she talking to kids or parents? Oh, wait, yes. Obviously the parents.

7. Whoa, there are multiple options for AP Calculus? I'm so thanking my lucky stars that I'm out of high school.

8. Holy electives, Batman! There are a lot of fun course offerings here. I'd love to take some of these classes now. Can I go back to high school?

9. I wonder if the staff members on the stage looking at the parents as we the videos that they're showing with overviews of different departments know that what I'm really seeing is a slide show in my mind of the past 13 years of parenting, from the long baby eyelashes to splashing the in the bathtub to endless reading of Goodnight, Moon to crazy dress up outfits to learning to swimming lessons to her looking forward to me volunteering at elementary parties, and so very much more.

10. Thank you, lady a few rows in front of me who just pulled out tissues. I'm glad to know I'm not alone. I realize you probably just have a cold, but please let me believe I'm not the only one who is a little verklempt.

11. Four and a half years. I cannot believe that's all I've got with her until she heads off to college. Whoa. Just, whoa.

12. My precious girl looks so very excited. Good. That's exactly as it should be, and I so hope she has an amazing high school experience. It's going to be a whole lot better for her if I've got a grip, so deep breath in, parenting panties on, let's do this.

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