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Anxiety ...

The distant roll of thunder pierces my dreams and I squint open an eye into my darkened bedroom as a flash of lightning momentarily brightens around the edges of my window. I sigh out loud as I hear one of my barn dogs frantically scratching at the door to come in, for he is a great independent brave dog ... until a thunderstorm pushes through. I get out of bed and stumble through the kitchen to the door and let him in, and he bolts to get underneath my bed. As another roll of thunder happens and a streak of lightning forms across the dark sky, I thank God for this brief reprieve from the dry Texas heat. With a yawn and a stretch, I turn and head back to my bedroom and snuggle into bed with the peaceful sound of rain beginning to fall on my tin roof lulling me back to sleep.

Several minutes go by and the storm starts to ramp up intensity, and as lightning brightens my room once more I roll over to see my daughter standing in my bedroom door. "Momma" she whimpers ... its storming out. "Yes my love, it is storming out" ... with a contented sigh I open the corner of my comforter for her to crawl into bed. She starts to walk towards the bed, and stops. "Hang on, I have to pee!" She leaves quickly to head to the bathroom. About two second later, a loud crack of thunder and the power blinks out. My lovely sweet angel lets out a blood curtailing scream as though the clown from "IT" just jumped out of the shower. I bolt out of bed to run in there, only to trip over my black dog on the way and stub my toe. "Shit" I grunt as I make my way to her by following the wall into the bathroom limping. With my hand firmly on my daughter, I guide her back to bed and we lay down in the dark with her curled up next to me. "Momma" she whispers in the dark ... I am not emotionally ready to go back to school this week ...

Fast forward to this morning, I get horses fed and worked and head into the house. Today I decided with certainty, I will make her pancakes for breakfast. It was with the tunes of "Hamilton" playing through my phone and the smell of pancakes in the kitchen that she opened her bedroom door. With a role of her eyes and a sigh, she comes and sits at the counter. "Well" she says with mock enthusiasm it must be a big day if you are cooking. Hush I laugh and fling pancake batter at her nose. I plated them up and slid them across the counter to her and she starts to nibble. Whats wrong dear I ask as I refill my coffee and move to sit down with her. "Mom I told you the other night, I am not emotionally ready for school." Hmmm, I sigh and take a sip of coffee. Well sweetie, that sounds like your anxiety talking. When you are nervous or anxious what do we need to do. Momma I don't wanna focus on my breathing and I don't wanna go back to school she demands and looks at me with big pleading eyes! Well baby you don't have a choice in the matter, you have to go. Ugh! She finishes breakfast and stomps off to her bedroom to change.

I pull into the school parking lot see a bunch parents waving to the children from the door. She grabs her face mask from the console and looks at me again. "MOM, I don't want to do this" she demands again. I return you don't have a choice in the matter and I get out to walk her down the side walk, as that is as far as I can take her these days due to COVID19 precautions. We stop by the doors and she looks up at me, and takes a deep inhale and then slowly lets it out. Just be brave my sweet girl I tell her, 20 seconds of an insane amount of bravery sweetheart, and everything will be okay.

Just like that she took a deep breath turned on her heel and walked up the steps to begin her 6th grade year. Now I find myself attempting to wrap my brain around the fact we are at the half way mark of her schooling at Alpha Omega Academy, before long I will be an empty nester!! Maybe I'm the one that's not emotionally ready for the school year ....

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