Freshman year anxiety…and the importance of stepping back

Last week, right after taking the older daughter back to college and the resulting fallout (i.e., shoe-buying excursions) that occurred from that, the younger daughter began serving her time in the big house.

High school.

Ninth grade.

Freshman year.



As you might imagine, there was some wine consumed.

olivia pope

And while my rising freshman had spent the summer simultaneously enthusiastic about starting her sentence (block schedule! better food! cool classes!) as well as filled with dread (6 a.m. wake up time, harder homework, no more Netflix until her eyes bled) she seemed to be riding the waves of emotion pretty evenly and without threat of sinking … until the night before school started.

Then all hell broke loose.

Okay, fine. That’s a slight exaggertion, but even so, the onslaught of anxiety took me a bit off guard, even though this is the girl who was born with drama coursing through her veins.

But there was no drama this time: the eve of her freshman year. Sure, the worries might have seemed trivial and dramatic and it might have been easy to brush them off as such (and even easier to just offer up solutions) but I’ve learned a few things in the almost 20 years I’ve been a parent. And it was one of those times to put them to use.

I’m sharing the story—her anxieties, the way I reacted and why—right HERE on Grown & Flown, my favorite one-stop megasite for all things related to my growing kids … and the very real empty nest that’s on my horizon.

I’d love to have you read it and leave a comment, especially if you can relate.

Thoughts and prayers over the next four years are appreciated.



For more of my posts on the blog relating to senior year, graduation, college and beyond, click HERE.

My other Grown & Flown pieces:
Letters to my daughter before she left for college
Real advice for parents sending their firstborn off to college
This sorority girl was okay with her daughter not rushing

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freshman year anxiety

1 Comment

  1. Lisa Thorbjarnarson Enslow on October 5, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    Just discovered your writing, thanks to Grown and Flown on FB. Loved the piece about technology linking your daughters, and this one about starting high school! I have three daughters, one a college sophomore (nearby), one a college freshman (400 miles away) and one a high school freshman. The 2 younger ones have a relationship that sounds a lot like your girls’, and I have had to hold my tears while watching my youngest miss her sister. It’s so nice to see that I have good company in this journey. Reading about other smart women who are surviving the progression towards an empty nest helps me greatly. Thanks!!

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