I walked to the Rio Grande

past a Middle School in the center of Albuquerque, NM.  There were balloons and flowers adorning a walkway/fence close to the entrance of the school. It reminded me of the “roadside memorials” when people have a car crash or bike crash.

I didn’t think on it further.

Then I ran into a letter on Patch.com – it was from the Superintendent of Schools and the Principal

With great sadness, I must inform you of a shooting that occurred on the Washington Middle School campus today that resulted in the death of one of our students and the arrest of another. This was an isolated incident that occurred outside the school building during lunch. No other students or staff were physically harmed, but many of us are hurting.

My heart hurt.  

15 days before in NYC:

A 14-year-old jumped to his death Thursday afternoon, July 29, from the Vessel in Manhattan’s Hudson Yards. The teenage boy became the fourth to die by suicide at Thomas Heatherwick’s 150-foot spiral staircase since it opened in March of 2019.

My heart hurt.

Middle School Feet

Middle School ages are tough for Parents to deal with – their adorable child, biddable child is turning sullen, dealing with fluctuating hormones, social awareness/awkwardness, anxiety, and confusion.

  • Approaching puberty: Big changes are going to start or have already begun to happen to a tween’s body.
  • Exposure to dangerous behaviors: Tweens face new pressures from peers including drugs, sex, alcohol, and more. Kids are curious and peer pressure is strong among tweens. At this age, tweens start learning about the dangers of the world. Many myths circulate in middle school hallways.
  • Increasing amounts of homework: The homework load alone can be a big change for tweens and parents should be ready to help if needed. Good study habits now can last a lifetime.
  • Increasing responsibilities: Tweens are often more involved in extra-curricular activities and can take on more chores and responsibilities at home.

This happens to be one of my favorite ages to be around.  Their views on the World and Life are insightful, honest and entertaining.  Please, be patient and kind to any Middle School age kid who crosses your Life.  Just listen, guide, give them attention and time – even if they are behaving ugly and being annoying. Remember, someone put up with you at that age.

Maybe then my heart won’t hurt in the future.



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