If you were to ask me to choose the most challenging aspect of our college-search journey, besides agonizing over financial packages, my short answer would be: watching my kid agonize over EVERYTHING ELSE, including my agonizing over financial packages.
For my middle daughter, now that it's crunch time (applications for merit and presidential scholarships are due December 1st), it's having to submit a personal essay: specifically, introducing herself to the admissions officers, by sharing with them what SHE feels makes her unique.
"But you're a pretty-terrific kid."
Aaaaand, here's where Heather, along with the rest of her siblings, would typically call "BS!!!" and insist that I'm just saying that, because I am her mother, and I'm supposed to say things like that.
"I don't want to sound arrogant!"
I just stood in the middle of the kitchen and stared at her, in mid-pancake flip, because I had a funny feeling that this was going to turn into one of those self-defining moments that, if done incorrectly, could scar your child for life and...YES!!!...I tend to over think stuff, like that, ALL THE DANG TIME.
See what I mean?!? Often times people mistake me for being a "good listener", when I'm probably just too busy trying to figure out stuff and my kids are already pretty good at answering their own questions for me, anyway.
"Because women get called-out for being over-confident quicker than men do."
Here's the thing: raising kids is hard, raising selfless teens is even harder; but raising up girls is dang near impossible, without being slapped in the head with a double-standard or twenty and this parenting thing is hard...YO!
"Can you come read this for me?"
Thankfully, my kids also know that I work well with the assistance of visual aids.
"OMG!!! You're crying, it's THAT bad?!?"
On the contrary, and I'm not just saying that because I am her mother, here's the part that moved me to tears -- shared with Heather's permission: