Dear Moms, You Know What the Right Decision about School Is

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably feeling overwhelmed, pressured to make the right decision about sending your child back to school. Your social media has been flooded with opinions, even arguments, about the right solution. You’ve beat the dead horse in your conversations with your spouse. So, as you’re making your choice (or maybe you’ve already decided and you need some reassurance), I want to remind you that whatever decision you make is the correct one.

You’ve done this before.

Think of the countless other difficult decisions you’ve made as a parent. Remember when you couldn’t decide if it was the right time for you to have a baby? What about all the OBGYNs and pediatricians you met with to determine who could best meet your needs as an expectant mother? Remember choosing a daycare when your baby was the size of a sesame seed so you could get on the waitlist? What about when you had to pick your position in the breast vs. bottle debate? How many school open houses did you attend so that you could make an informed decision (after, of course, you decided between private or public)? Chances are, those decisions you made—and they certainly seemed monumental and life-altering at the  time—turned out fine. Or, maybe your decision didn’t turn out great. That pediatrician you picked wasn’t a good fit for your family? So, what did you do next? You made a change. You went back to the drawing board and explored other options. You learned and adjusted, and you can do it again and again and again because that’s how you navigate parenthood.

Stop looking for a perfect solution.

There is no ideal situation here. There is no option without risk or stress. You’re nervous that you risk exposure if you send your child back to school. You feel guilty about potentially exposing the dedicated teachers you adore. You’re scared that if you choose the virtual option, you’ll be depriving your child of a quality education and needed socialization. You’re worried that you can’t do your own job and shoulder the burden of facilitating distance learning. You just want to do the next right thing, but you have no clue what that is. I understand all of that; I’m struggling right there with you.

The anxiety lies in the anticipation.

So much worry and fear, and I believe that comes from not being able to predict or control the future as it relates to this unprecedented situation. But, have you ever been able to predict the future? Still, you’ve made the tough calls plenty of times. You’re going to make the right choice, the one that is best for your family. You’ve made it this far in your motherhood journey, and it hasn’t been an easy one. You’ve done great, you’re doing great, trust that you’ll continue to do great. And, if you fall short, you’ll make the adjustments, just as you always have.

Alyson Haggerty
Alyson lives in Metairie with her husband, Patrick, their 7 and 5-year-old boys, and their Morkie, Beignet. After teaching for almost ten years, she left a career in education and is now a full-time nursing student. In her hypothetical free time, Alyson would enjoy flipping furniture, writing, dancing, and painting. She is always looking for a racquetball partner and loves streetcar rides and playing board games with her family. A good cook, she is constantly on a quest to answer the age-old question, “What’s for dinner?” but has thus far been unsuccessful.

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