As a recovering "worry wort", I recall first hand the anxiety that came with the approaching nightly bedtime as a kid.
Sundays were awful. I said goodbye to any sleep the night before a test. And forget about the night before a performance or a big tennis match.
But the worst? Prepping to go back to school after a long break. I was a hot mess.
Even though I was someone that kind enjoyed school, sometimes, I still had major qualms about going.
So my mom helped put a routine in place that helped calm me down.
Even though she was so tired herself (umm, 4 daughters!) she would tuck me in, and say a prayer or sing me a song each night. We would talk to help ease my mind about whatever worry was in the forefront. Then, if I was still not ready for sleep, I would write my worries down on paper. I kept a little notepad and pen, ready to go on my nightstand for years.
Tonight, on the eve of my boys first day back to school, I want to help relax their nerves too. Two out of three are starting at new schools tomorrow, so I know "all the feels" are there, even if they aren't outwardly showing it.
Below is the nightly routine we are going to try and instill. Maybe it could help your little worriers, too.
1. Make sure the backpack is set and ready to go! Maybe even make their lunch the night before too, if you're super motivated ;) Also, lunch notes.
2. Pick out tomorrow's outfit, so there is no decision making in the morning.
3. Shower/bathe in the evening if possible (if your kids aren't teens yet- otherwise schedule time for that fresh shower in the am.)
4. Put on fresh jammies, brush teeth, comb hair... yes I have to spell all this out for my kids.
5. Read a book. Talk about it together.
6. Recite a special prayer or some sort of words of gratitude.
7. Finally, if your child still has worries on their mind, teach them to write them down. This was huge for me, especially during my anxious college years. I still do this now. And of course I created a cute notepad to help, kids and adults versions too!
The consistency of a routine will give them so much peace.
My mom's nightly prayer (above), and Kevin's (below). I LOVE them both so much. Both prints are available in the shop! $14 each.
Sweet Dreams notepads, for kids. Write it down, let it go, sleep well. Only $8!
Night Stand Notes. Write it down, go back to sleep. Also, only $8!
Thanks for reading friends. Good luck to all your kids, and to all the teachers and staff! I'm thinking of you.
Good night, sleep tight.