Friday, March 27, 2009

Pretend it's Thursday

Gah! I had the day from wherever yesterday and didn't get to blog. Plus, I haven't taken a pic for my What's in my Crochet Bag update, so today, pretend it's Thursday (but only on my blog, don't ruin your weekend.) Tomorrow, we will pretend it's Friday and since I don't usually post on weekends, we'll be back in the sync with the rest of the world by Monday.

So, anyway...

I had my Spring Parent/Teacher conference last night. Can I just say that Brynna's teacher is one of my favorite peoples in all of creation. I love her. I wish I could hire her to be Brynna's private teacher and stay with her through college. Nobody gets my kid, like she gets my kid.

My kid has the best handwriting on the planet. She writes better than calligraphers (I'm pretty sure that's what she said, anyway. Once you add the mommy filter to it at least.) I love that. I love that she is such a good writer and that she really, really loves to write. Here's the shocking news: she can't read. They always do it this way at her Montessori (maybe all Montessoris (Montessories, Montessore, oh whatever), I'm not sure). I guess reading and writing are not really as related as we think. They use different areas of the brain, yadda, yadda.

What I want to know, is how does a kid desire to write if they can't read? If they don't understand the magic of reading for themselves, why do the even want to do it in the first place?

And Brynna desires to write. She wants to write more than she wants to wash her hands with no one else in the bathroom to tell her that's too much soap, more than she wants Maren to grow up already so she can play with her instead of just cooing, more than she wants ravioli for supper every night. (I know, not peanut butter and jelly or pizza or cheeseburgers but ravioli. Weird, right?)

She loves to practice writing. She loves for me to write things so that she can copy them. She loves for me to spell words while I'm cooking so she can write them down.

She does not love the reading stuff with the same vigor.

She and I had a forty-five minute argument the other night about whether cat started with a c or a t. I wanted to drop it, I tried to drop it, but she stubbornly insisted that I admit that I was wrong and cat starts with a t. Tat. I can't do that. I can pretend we're talking about something else, distract her with something more interesting, I can even bribe her to drop it. But I cannot lie to her in that fundamental way.

The fabulous-teacher-woman (let's call her FTW) thinks she's still having hearing issues. I tend to agree. We're going to have to do more testing, I think. Here's the scary part, and the part that I've been meandering around to: she said some dreaded words, the FTW, at our conference. She said the big PHL words. Permanent Hearing Loss. The words that have been rattling around in my head since we did the tubes. What if? What if? What if? What if there is permanent hearing loss?

She can obviously hear. It's not a matter of omygoodnessIhavetolearnsignlanguageandisn'tthere

At this point, the only real issue I can come up with is that she won't be able to learn to read by phonics. Which really isn't that big of a deal, really.

It's just that I hear those words, those dreaded words and I wonder if I could have done anything different. Could I have prevented this in the first place if I had somehow known when she got an ear infection before it spread to her eyes, if I had realized that it's only four ear infections a year that is an indicator of tubes, if I had pushed for a hearing test when she was having speech problems a year ago, but the evaluation said that they weren't bad enough to treat.

But a wise, wise woman once told me, "You are going to screw up your kids. Permanently. You are going to do the wrong thing, say the wrong thing, be the wrong thing. You are going to be the reason that your kids need therapy. And that's okay, because it's life and everybody lives with it. All that you can hope for, can strive for, is that you raise kids that are strong enough, caring enough, smart enough, kind enough and stable enough to get over it and screw up their own kids."

This is the same woman who told me to show Brynna a tape of the ball dropping at 10:00 on New Year's Eve so I wouldn't have to deal with the fallout of letting her stay up to midnight, so trust me, she's a smartie. (No, I didn't do it and it was only partially because I've never taped the ball dropping before.)

So, get over it, Jessi. Get back to the business of properly screwing up your kids and quit worrying about what's already been done. Guilt is not my friend, no matter how well we're acquainted. And worry will kill me and give me wrinkles. And let's face it, no one wants wrinkles.

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