Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Lesson Learned

Anyone who is raising, or has raised, a pre teen kid, knows about fights, disagreements, frustration. Especially if said kid, is a girl!
It’s only Wednesday, and already this week, I have had my fair share of arguments, disappointments, fighting and frustration. Oh and crying, let me not leave out the crying. Mostly by me!
I always ask my daughter, when we are in the making up stage, “what does mom hate most in the world, above anything else?” Her answer is “fighting with me.” Arguing with her is something I do hate. It reminds me of the power of our words with a child, what they remember, what they carry with them, what becomes a part of them, the damage our words can cause. Arguing with her, takes me back to fights in my family that I was witness to. Fights so fierce and so horrible, words that have cut so deep, I can`t imagine the depths to which they have penetrated. They are fights I would never take part in, but ones that are now a part of the fibre of who I am, a part of my being.
When me and my girl argue, I worry about making her feel guilty, causing her hurt feelings, giving her a reason to not trust me, not respect me, or not love me the way a daughter should love her momma.
Most of our fights are about homework, shores, responsibility, tutor. I am sure this is typical. In fact, I know it is. One of the main reasons I quit my job, was to help Haley, to be with her. I wanted to be there, with no work attachments (because I never could leave my job at the door), to help her with her homework, to tutor her, to home school her in the summer. This takes hours of dedication, patience, hard work. My expectations are high, and I truly believe that learning disability or not, we can do anything we truly set our minds to.
I am a perfectionist. There, I said it. While I do NOT expect Haley to be perfect, I do expect her to try her best at all times. I forget that she is only turning 12. I say to myself, shame on me, that I have forgotten what it is like to be a twelve year old girl.
A friend told me something today that I sat with, considered for a while, cried about, and felt it`s truth take over me. She said, of her son with ADD, that a teacher once said to her that you cannot work harder than your kid is working at their education. And there I had it. I was trying harder than my daughter, at her own education. I know, as many people know, that you have to want something with everything that you are, if you truly want for something valuable. She helped me to remember that there is so much more to life for Haley than just how she is doing academically.
Shame on me for losing sight of what is important; it is most important to me that Haley grow into a woman that is a whole person, compassionate, caring, giving, kind and loving. She is already more of all of these things than many adults I know.
I was reminded today that while it may be important to me that Haley know how to write a good essay, or solve a math problem, I know that the best way I can ``teach`` Haley, is to be a good mom, a good person. I can ``teach`` Haley how to spell and count money and write a proper essay. What I want her to LEARN is how to be a lovely, confident woman. This is something I can only do as well as the example I set for her.

I will always help Haley with her learning, she needs the help, and it is part of my job as her mom. I am simply acknowledging that today, I learned a good lesson, and I appreciate the person who helped me to see that!
Thank you for stopping by!


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