The beginning of a new school year can be a weirdly emotional time.
You’re happy because you’re free from your tiny overlord’s quest for constant attention and entertainment; you’re sad because you’re going to miss them while they’re at school all day, every day; and you’re baffled about what you’re going to make for a brown bag lunch every. Single. Day. Yet again.
Kids are bummed that summer is over and they have to return to classes and homework; they’re happy to spend the whole day with their friends again; but mostly, they’re conflicted about not seeing their mom every day anymore.
Conquer the end-of-summer emotional rollercoaster by checking out these baby animals who put on their bravest faces and are ready to leave the nest.
01 of 10
They're "Too Cool" for Mom and Dad
This baby elephant, like the average sixth grader, is beginning to understand that it’s simply not cool to have your mom help you cross the street, get to your classroom or cut your food into bite-sized pieces anymore. But boys, having a bad attitude and SnapChat filters definitely are.Continue to 2 of 10 below.
02 of 10
They Pretend to Hate Your Hugs & Kisses
Just like being walked to your classroom, getting a smooch from your mom at drop-off was also totally uncool. Remember trying to dodge her every morning? You probably looked like this baby kangaroo, trying to escape her mother’s grasp.
But she’ll definitely miss her mom’s hugs when she goes off to college.Continue to 3 of 10 below.
03 of 10
Personal Grooming Habits Suffer
A major part of adulthood is walking around and interacting with other humans with schmutz all over your face… and no one telling you about it. Take a moment to appreciate your mom licking her thumb or tissue to wipe it off, even though it was super embarrassing at the time.Continue to 4 of 10 below.
04 of 10
They Huff and Puff About Doing Chores
This is the face you make when your mom asks you to wash the dishes and, while you’re in the middle of washing, yells, “Didn’t I ask you to take out the trash?!” Unfortunately, when you’re an adult and living in your own home, this is still a common occurrence.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
05 of 10
They Prefer a Messier Look
As someone with wavy hair, the majority of my childhood mornings were spent avoiding a hairbrush wielded by my mother. Frizzy, brushed out waves with a middle part did not work for me. But, like this baby lemur, she managed to catch me every morning.Continue to 6 of 10 below.
06 of 10
They Can Make It on Their Own
“See?!” you exclaimed triumphantly, as your mother sat there, looking largely unimpressed. “I can make my own dinner!”
But you didn’t let her try it because it actually tasted really bad and you had to save face.Continue to 7 of 10 below.
07 of 10
They Have Personal Style
That time when you’re finally allowed to choose your own outfits for school and you’re really feeling yourself, but actually end up looking like a bigger nerd than you would have if your mom had just laid out your clothes.Continue to 8 of 10 below.
08 of 10
They Boss Their Siblings Around
The best part about leaving the nest? No more lectures about why you shouldn’t be a jerk to your siblings. The worst part about leaving the nest? Far fewer opportunities to be a jerk to your siblings.Continue to 9 of 10 below.
09 of 10
They're Proud of Their First Home
Living in your own place—especially if you don’t have roommates!—is a major perk of adulthood. Remember how proud you were of your very first apartment? Until you realized it was actually a severely overpriced pig sty with hay—err, your junk—all over the place?Continue to 10 of 10 below.
10 of 10
They Miss You
There are a lot of great things about leaving the nest: Eating toast for dinner, the privacy of your own apartment or home, wasting a whole day binging Netflix series. But the absolute best part of leaving the nest is going back home to see your mom. And maybe even being super spoiled during your visit.