This is what affirmation feels like.
My oldest son – now a college freshman – voluntarily brings me his essays for rhetoric and comp class to ask for my opinion. After years of being the essay assigner, it’s lovely to be in the supportive role. The good guy rather than the bad guy in the whole essay plotline.
I also enjoy reading his thoughts which are articulated for someone else (so I know they aren’t written just for my benefit!). They feel more honest.
Around midnight (yes, he’s still a procrastinator – college hasn’t cured him of that), he brought me an essay which takes the position that music should be incorporated in all subjects of the school system. Knowing him the way I do, I wasn’t surprised by his position. I was pleasantly surprised, though, to see my own name used to surport his point that educators should be willing to try new approaches:
Having spent my childhood as a home educated student, I’ve seen up close what a teacher who is vested in her students can accomplish. My mother would constantly try new ways to interest me in my different subjects.
“My mother.” That’s me. 🙂 I came up a few other times in the essay, although not by name. He discussed various creative learning techniques that he’d used to help himself through difficult subjects, and as I read I thought, “I taught him that” or “I remember helping him do that.”
It’s a singular joy to hear my son appreciate his education and realize the value of what he’s been given. There were days (perhaps years) when I wasn’t sure this would happen.
Like the worthy woman of Proverbs 31, my children rise up and call me blessed.
I wish this same moment for every educator who has toiled over a student.