Thursday, August 14, 2014

Naming Gifts

Ya'll we are heading to the big leagues.

Big boy school.

Full on, all day, called and taxpayer subsidized school.

And I'm seized with the worry and the opportunity.

After many months of school angst, we have landed a place we feel so comfortable.  We feel incredibly lucky to have access to school at Robbie's age, and we feel even better after we have engaged in parent events, teacher questionnaires, and getting to know your family activities over the last few weeks.

I've been surprisingly zen about everything until the last couple days.

Then the school supply list came.

And the teacher welcome email.

And the kid survey.

And all of a sudden you are in the parenting big leagues.

Not worrying about packing a freaking lunch, and remembering swim diapers on Mondays for Annie and Wednesdays for R. Not forgetting that Thursdays is music, and Tuesday is M's birthday so no snack that day, and Friday is school spirit pajama week, and Monday is sticker day, and OIF.

We are moving from basics, safety, supporting and learning environments to the challenges of growth environments.

We are moving, for the first time, to a place we don't know a soul.

And by we, I mean Robster.  Our sweet and cautious and kind and a little scared little dude.

And today, we get the best survey from his teacher.  It's a great one.  One that causes you to reflect, be honest, and find good words to find your way around your potty training troubles, because, you know, you don't want to be that Mom.

And you have to put words to your child.  Your child, the one that is a piece of your heart, running around.

You want to name his gifts and challenges honestly. 

You want him to be supported the best he can be.

  • What are your goals for your child this year?
  • What does your child enjoy doing? What interests does your child have?
  • What motivates your child?
  • What games does your child like to play?
  • When your child is upset, what are some strategies that you find helpful?
  • When your child has conflicts with other children, what are some ways he/she works them out? Please share any information I should know about your child (bathroom needs, naptime needs, etc.)

I won't share our words and thoughts, but I will say, we were honest about our kind, tenderhearted, cautious, focused, inquisitive, and a little fearful kid.  We want him to learn to love school and have a lifetime love for learning.  We want him to be a good friend.

How do you tell him his smiles are heart melting?

The fact that he says "I so proud of you Mama" makes your gut seize?

That he sings the "Keep Trying, Don't Give Up" song and sticks out his tongue when climbing a new structure on the playground?

That he knows all the words to both "Carolina In My Mind" and "Nessum Dorma"

That he calls "This Old Man" the "Snowman" song?

That he is exceedingly, heart wrenchingly kind.  Helps "scared friends" find toys, says "its ok", even when he's a little scared.

I wonder how you, who knows our Robbie, would answer these questions.  Are they the same as our answers?

And I would say, how would we, as adults answer those questions about ourselves if our new boss or new roommate or new relationship would want to know them?

Sunrise, sunset ya'll.  I now understand that parental-lump-in-the-throat with school.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Hootie Jr.

I owe so many actual posts-- even have some photos to back them up.

And thoughts?  I have them too.

But for tonight?

A little Blowfish. 

I think this is a cute explosion, but then again, I'm the Mom.