ONWARDS AND UPWARDS
Today marks the final day of term 1 at school and we are all exhausted but quietly satisfied. We’re looking forward to sleeping in on frosty mornings, packing the lunch boxes away, travelling to Melbourne for some much need Grandparent time and enjoying the freedom that surrounds us at home.
I feel like getting here has been an epic journey but it is full of the qualities of a decision well made. I write about it with an overwhelming sense of pride in who my children are and how they are showing up and handling this new venture. Kai is taking on the challenges of school head on and has tackled finding his place with maturity and openness. He loves how his teacher tells them jokes and the joy of sport and his new friends. He understands where he is at and realises where he must work hard to improve, all with an air of confidence in himself. Tus has taken on school with gusto and has loved making more friends. She learns quickly, knows her areas for improvement and is falling in love. Cove, while hides under the blankets in the mornings and announces ‘he’s not going today,’ is learning fast, exceeding expectations in maths, sharing his crazy ideas and is finally making friends that are his own. I am so proud of how they are participating, they are so open and unafraid to be themselves.
With a renewed amount of personal energy I am able to be there for them everyday, and while I sometimes feel like I am the damage control, their strength and tenacity puts me at ease. There are a couple of things we talk about regularly;
- We talk about learning being a personal journey and that they must each find their own way. We do not focus on grades or how they compare, instead we talk about what they need to focus on to be better than yesterday.
- We talk about Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison, who like many others were not academics and struggled in the schooling system. Despite all that, however, they managed to change the world a little by holding onto their own inner genius.
- We talk about school being a support to help the children gain mastery in literacy and numeracy. Not so that they get A’s but so that they may be independent in their learning. For once they achieve that, they can learn anything they want and the world is theirs.
- We talk about the keys to friendship and that they must always choose to be kind even when they disagree or when someone is being nasty.
- We talk about looking out for each other and the bonds of family.
- We talk about managing ourselves in times that are busy and when we have little time to rest. The children are still doing their chores and helping out at home, slowly understanding that even though life gets busy and we get tired, there are things that need to be done. After years of feeling like I was forcing them to help at home, I feel that they are understanding that they too have a responsibility to their home and their family.
The term has offered me so much to reflect on and to share. I am no closer to loving the ‘system’ nor am I trying to, but I realise now what it has given me and my family. I am more clear in my communication and my expectations, the fog finally lifting. I am able to be the parent I always knew I could be; my patience, my consciousness and my understanding returning. Giving myself time to follow my own heart and to do the things I love, has enabled me to be a better Mum and for that I am eternally grateful. Life is not all roses and candy and we’re silly if we think it ever will be. However, when we choose to do what we love, to follow the yearning within us and to focus on bringing our own dreams into reality, I promise you, we can handle whatever challenges we face; in parenting and in life.
For me and my life at the moment the school system is my support. It is part of the village that I believe it takes to raise a child. As I write about it my blood quickens, my passion rises up and I am filled with sheer determination. I will leave nothing unexplored and nothing underdone in order to create something that is not just the support I have, BUT IS SOMETHING THAT I LOVE.