Did you know that children between the ages of 7 and 9 often experience separation anxiety? I didn’t! I did know that my oldest little one has been having a very hard time leaving me each morning. Bus time has been hard. It’s hard for him to go. It’s hard for me to see his sad face in the bus window. I’ve been told by very reliable sources that he is a happy, smiley boy at school. His grades and behavior are great too. It’s just hard to say goodbye and sometimes during the day, he wishes that he were back at home. I was reading a Parenting magazine last night before bed. It mentioned that this is actually common for children ages 7-9. Well, my 8 year old is smack in the middle of that age group. It was relief to know that this was a normal phase. The magazine gave some suggestions about how to help your child separate. The suggestion that my husband and I liked the most was giving your child a small object to take with them that would remind them of you. My son loves cats. He also loves the feel of silky materials and loops of ribbon on things. Green is his favorite color. This afternoon I made him what I am calling a worry cat. The idea is that he can keep it in his pocket (it’s nice and small, only about 2 1/2″ square) and reach for it when he needs it. There is a loop to fiddle with and the back is silky. And best of all, it is washable! My husband is already laughing about what it will look like by the end of the week. I’m looking forward to the afternoon bus to present it to him!
Edited to add: The worry cat received a huge smile when I gave it to my son after school yesterday. Today at bus time, he smiled at me and touched his pocket and hopped right on the bus! Amazing!