It is 5 am – and I am awake before my alarm.
I feel jittery and my hands are freezing.
Why do I feel like this? I wonder.
And then as the haze of sleep begins to clear – it hits me. It is my daughter’s first day of school!
I wish I could say – oh – everyone has jitters when they first send their kids to school.
A statement like that would be really convincing if my daughter was a toddler or a pre-schooler – just entering school. My daughter however is eight years old and is beginning class four.
After six years of sending my little one to school – I am still just as anxious as I was six years ago – because once more – she is going to a new school.
Thanks to having a Dad in the Armed Forces – in the eight years of her life – my daughter is now going to her fifth school.
I have always been enthusiastic about my husband’s moves.
Change – I firmly believe – always brings in something better.
But changing schools is something I still dread.
As I watch my little baby (she will always be a little baby to me) – determinedly square her shoulders, obstinately tilt her head, wave a smart smiling goodbye and get swallowed up in a crowd of strangers – my heart really and truly aches.
How I wish I knew some kids in her class.
If this was preschool – I would have made the effort to pick up and drop her to school for a month just so that – as I waited outside the gate I could make friends with some fellow moms with kids in the same class. With that I would be able to push my daughter into a circle more easily and have a network of parents to fall back on when my daughter missed school or when I wanted some information.
But as kids grow older most parents don’t accompany them – so an effort like that would be futile in my case.
Oh what oh what do I do?
I look down at my phone –my extended self and my chief confidant. If only there was a magical solution to this problem I think…………………
Are you a parent who moves a lot?
You must be. Everyone moves nowadays – who doesn’t? The world beckons to you with new opportunities and experiences – all out there – waiting for you – and you have only one life to do all that your heart desires. How can you not move?
But do moves shake you up? They certainly do.
It is certainly easier to move now than it ever was in the past. Almost all material possessions and amenities are now available everywhere – all you need to do is go online.
Don’t you wish that was true of human connections?
Wouldn’t it be great if you could just go online and find friends?
Well you can. You can get on to professional networks – that is quite easy. You can join networks based on shared interests. Actually you can form a network of just any kind over just about anything.
So is there a way to network with the parents of the children in your child’s class.
Phone in hand – I set out to find out.
And I discovered Talkative Parents – a fabulous new app. Check out their Facebook Page and Twitter account
The app can be downloaded free. All you need is an android ios or windows smart phone.
The app allows you to connect with parents of other children in your class.
Unlike other group apps which require you to have the contact details of other parents to enable you to join a chat group – here you can join just by entering the school, class and section of your child.
This is a real boon for new parents like me for whom it may take a while to actually get the contact details of other parents and join closed groups.
I don’t need to tell you how useful connecting with other parents can be – but let me still tell you how I think I will benefit. As I chat on the group – I am sure to find people I want to personally connect with – and that will help me make friends faster. Once I know people I can find my way into carpools, hobby classes and most importantly – BIRTHDAY PARTIES.
If you are a parent – I am sure you will know how important it is for kids nowadays to be invited to birthday parties and to have friends to invite to their birthday parties. It may sound frivolous to you and me – but I have discovered that being invited to birthday parties is really vital for survival.
Also – I would be able to get schoolwork when my daughter misses school and get inputs on projects, submissions, tests etc. - things that end up causing me a lot of stress sometimes.
So – I am going to get the app.
Maybe you would like to get it too.