We have been so fortunate that we have lived int he same house for the past 6 years. My kids have had established good friendships and connections here. Now, we are set to move them in their high school years.
Let me just say one thing. I would rather move with a 4 year old any day of the week.
This is not to say that my kids aren’t handling the move like troopers. Freckle Face had some early melt downs, but he is convincing himself that he is excited about the move. I have to love his optimistic personality. Always looking for the positive in a situation. What a gift he has, and it is contagious.
The other two are also handling things pretty well. My oldest doesn’t talk about things much. He internalizes most everything. He will be a senior next year. My daughter is also sad, but going into the move chin up. No one is going to argue with me that it is difficult to move at this time in their lives. I wish I had a dollar for every time I heard “at least you homeschool, so they don’t have to change schools”. I would be a wealthy woman. It could be easy to believe this if you believed couple of things. First, that my teens have no friends. And secondly, that homeschooling somehow immunizes them from the drama that is a teen’s life.
I used to believe that homeschooling would protect my kids from all the drama and angst that we all seen in teens. I thought that if we homeschool I would have these wonderful teens that never argued with me and expressed themselves only in positive ways. Oh yes, I bought into that little lie. Let me tell you now, it doesn’t. Oh, I have great teens. Wonderful teens. I love being with them and laughing with them. They are mature for their age, but they are still teens. With teen problems. With teen drama. Not as much as we would have if they were in school, but we have it. They are emotional like all other teens. They are irrational like all other teens. Occasionally, they believe that we are ruining their live like all other teens. I think that may be the case with the move, but they haven’t vocalized it. Yet.
My teens have to leave their friends just the same as any teen that is in school. It stinks. Six years is a long time to build friendships. It is plenty of time to be comfortable with your friends. I will concede the point that they don’t have to go into a strange school filled with hormonal teens and try to make a way for themselves. That would be painful, but they still have to find themselves a social circle. I can’t do it for them. Those days are gone.
I remember moving to Great Lakes. They were 3 and 1. I joined a playgroup. I took them to the park, and slowly, we made friends. Their friends were the children of my friends. That was how it worked. I was the one required to put myself out there. When we moved to Jacksonville, they were 6 and 4. Again, I found a homeschool group. I forced myself to hit the park day, introduced myself to the moms, and away we went. This time it is different. It will be up to them to make their friends.
Regardless of how my husband’s career goes, this will be the last military move for my son. My daughter may have one more. Freckle Face isn’t done yet, and I will be revisiting this in a few years. So much is written and done to make the move easy for young children, but there is not much out there for teens. We expect them to “suck it up” and move on. They are old enough to handle it. Looking back, it was much easier to move with the young children. I wish there was a way to make it easy for them, but there just isn’t. So they suck it up and deal. I am proud of the maturity they are starting to show. Maybe, just maybe, they will believe that we didn’t ruin their lives afterall.