Thursday, January 19, 2006

If The High School Counselor Speaks In A Forest…

Several years ago, when Demigoddess the Elder was about nine, I brought her to the pediatrician's office because I suspected she had a urinary tract infection. I helped her do the peeing-in-the-cup thing, and a little while later the doctor confirmed that she in fact had a UTI, based on the presence of blood cells in her urine. Just before writing out a prescription for antibiotics, the doctor asked me, "She hasn't started her period yet, has she?"

Her what now?

"Because some girls start as young as eight."

Who? Huh?

English had suddenly become a foreign language. My baby and menstruation did not compute.

I did eventually come to grips with the fact that my child would inevitably hit puberty, and even managed to do it before the puberty actually happened (although, granted, not by much). I figured I had weathered one of parenting's more traumatic transitions fairly gracefully.

Then last night I attended an orientation meeting for the parents of kids who will begin their high school careers next fall. I sat at a lunchroom table with the parents of a couple of Ms. Elder's friends, whom I have known since way back when our children were still seriously into Barney. We had registration forms, class booklets and a variety of other handouts. As I looked around the room, I remembered my own high school lunch room, and thought about how Demi the Elder is entering into some of the most exciting, most memorable years of her young life.

A school counselor presented an overview of the high school experience, and explained the registration process. She talked about graduation requirements, available elective classes, and the honors program.

At least, I think that’s what she was taking about.

I can’t say for sure, because five minutes into the presentation the words “Driver’s Ed” sent my fingers immediately into my ears.

After that, all I heard was my own voice chanting, "BLAH-DEE-BLAH-DEE-BLAH-DEE-BLAH-DEE-BLAH-DEE-BLAH-DEE-BLAAAAAAAAAAAAA…”


JeepGirl said...

Great site. Found you from the mommybloggers site.

Man oh man, I hear you. I only have one daughter but it was so hard for me to go thru the whole developing into a woman deal. She is my baby and is not fair, she's not old enough to have to go thru all this crap. I don't like having the monthly bill and I didn't want my daughter to have to either. Well needless to say, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and let nature take its course. But I don't have to like it.

margalit said...

I've got a 13 year old in 10th grade in high school, and his twin sister is heading there as well next year, so man, I can so relate. The thing is, after the horrors of middle school, high school is a dream. The kids are nicer, the teachers are more serious about their jobs, the school is so much more supportive, and the best thing is, the kids finally click into the fact that THEIR effort is going to directly affect their future. It's a dream come true!