Tuesday, February 22, 2011
A Daughter Grows
Three years ago, I was worried. You see, she has a summer birthday and when we sent her to school, we knew she was young, but we also saw her as smart and capable. Kindergarten was fine. Then came first grade. Oh my. The tears. The struggles. I questioned if we had done the right thing. Perhaps we should have waited another year to send her to school. I even blogged about some of her math struggles. You can read about it here or here. Tonight, she came home and out of the 23 in her class she was the 4th one to pass her multiplication timed tests!!! She is so proud. And so am I. She's most excited that tomorrow she just gets to 'sit there' while others continue to take their tests.
And then there's reading. I have read to her since the moment she opened her eyes in this world. Then she would spend hours just picking up books and reading them the way toddlers, preschoolers and young readers do. Then she had to 'learn to read' and that was when she began hating to read! She wanted nothing to do with reading. She stopped loving to read and my heart was breaking. How can my daughter NOT love reading?!?! It was a gift I tried so hard to instill in her. But no, reading our 'required minutes' for school became a struggle. Major struggle. 1st grade. 2nd grade. 3rd grade. and now she's in 4th grade. I've seen small growth through the years, but tonight when I yelled into them, 'you girls need to get into bed and start reading', I almost got tears in my eyes when she yelled back, "I LOVE READING!!!" I guess sometimes the gifts we give our children just take awhile to bloom. I think I will need to remember that many times over the coming years.
And then there's standardized testing. For the first time this last month, her scores actually reflect what her teachers have known her capable of and see often in the classroom. She still has test anxiety. But she is overcoming.
I am so thankful for the beautiful teachers - Ms. Thye, Mrs. Estes, Mrs. Casella and Mrs. Long who have invested in her, encouraged her, believed in her and helped her get to this point. For all those seeds they planted and tools they gave her, my heart is filled with gratitude.
And as long as I'm writing about Morgan. This weekend is going to be another 'letting go' time for me. She is going, by herself, with her girl scout troop to St. Louis. She's never travelled that far without us, or been away for that long, by herself. I know she's ready and so excited about it. But, it doesn't make it any easier for my heart.