Like most working parents, I miss the bulk of my kids’ days during the week — days which I hear about through their stories, their daily reports, glimpses I catch on the webcam and the funny/embarrassing anecdotes their teachers tell me on the way out the door.
I sometimes feel guilty for this fact — something I’ve been pretty vocal about here on the blog — but I live for their huge smiles and wild greetings where they leap into my arms. The minute I’m with them, my work brain shuts off. I’m back in “mom mode.” And I love hearing the latest school gossip: who is now best friends with whom, who went to the office, who ate seconds of tacos, what game they played on the playground, who didn’t listen at circle time, what new song they sang/book they read … I hear it all.
That being said, one thing I know to be true about my daughter is that she doesn’t like to be the center of attention or to have a lot of fuss made over her — she needs time to wake up the morning, to ease her way into her classroom, to move slowly into new and unfamiliar situations … (ex: lately she’s not been participating in dance when the other classes come in to watch, claiming she is “shy.”)
So imagine my surprise when she snuck this little gem into conversation recently while on a family walk “. ..when I was reading Hop on Pop to my class during circle time…”
I stopped in my tracks. “Wait, you read the book to your class? Or your teacher did?” I asked, incredulous. I mean, I know she can read the book — I’ve heard her do it many times — but usually she gets so shy when in a crowd! The thought of my girl reading to her class blew me away.
“I did,” she said proudly, then quickly changed the subject to the cute purple shoes her best friend was wearing that day.
Sure enough, her report that day verified that she had, in fact, read Hop on Pop to her class. To say I was bursting with pride was an understatement. I never in a million years would have predicted she’d sit in front of two or three teachers, and sixteen of her peers, and READ.
Color me impressed!
Then tonight we had conferences, and her teacher told us that she is an enormous helper in the class –that she’s been teaching the other kids in her small group to count to 100+, write their names, sound out and [attempt to spell] rhyming words. Instead of being impatient that she may know something they don’t, her teacher said that she doesn’t get frustrated with them — instead, she works with them in a really sweet, nurturing manner.
The fact that she is known as a helper didn’t surprise me — she loves to play “Teacher” with Benny and she loves to boss him around!– but the fact that she was helping her own classmates learn made me tear up.
It’s true that I miss a lot by not being with her all the time … but I love knowing the confident, strong little girl she is becoming — both in our presence, and even when away from us. ❤
Her preschool graduation is in a couple weeks, and I hear they wear little caps and gowns and it’s a big-to-do. She’s about to embark on an amazing new journey this fall — kindergarten — and I can only hope she will continue to flourish.
Go forth and conquer, little one!
Here are some favorites from our photo shoot with the great Staci Ainsworth a couple weeks ago. As usual, she captured the essence of my crazy little family to a T! And the sassy, sweet and silly sides of our girl: the helper, the teacher, and the leader in her own right. ❤