Wednesday, May 18, 2011

An Open Letter...

I don't push my child to excel, he does that on his own. He sets goals and overshoots them. I don't sit in his classes, do his group work and take his tests, nor do I do his homework or projects. His grades and achievements are his and his alone. As hard as he works, he plays even harder. He is a clown. His room is sometimes messy. He has to be reminded to make his bed and clean his bathroom. He plays his music so loud, I can't hear myself think. And when he wants to sleep in, a jackhammer by his ear wouldn't wake him. Best of all, he is a sweet and caring person who just happens to be goal-oriented.

Why can't you be happy for him? Why do you feel the need to make fun of me, and more importantly, of him?

If it was your child, I would be the first in line to congratulate him and say job well done.

What if the tables were turned? Would you be hurt if I made fun of your child's accomplishments? Would you be angry if you found out people speculated about whether or not you are the one doing your child's work for him?

Can we all please cut the negativity and the bitterness and instead concentrate on the positive? Please don't compare our children. My son is good at a lot of things, but he also knows there are many more who are better than he is.

As parents, we should not be comparing our children to others. We are all different and special in our own ways. We need to emphasize our children's positive points and remind them everyday that they are special.

I'm a proud mama! (And I'm not ashamed to admit it!)

Several not-so-subtle jabs have been thrown my way because I often post about my kids and their achievements. It probably bothers some people, some may see it as bragging. I don't post to brag. I write about their achievements because I am extremely proud of who they are and what they are accomplishing on their own. I don't do their work for them. I don't push them to join competitions and sports activities. They choose to do those things on their own. I simply encourage them to do their best.

Son #1 was a preemie. He was born 10 weeks early, weighing in at a little over 3 pounds. The first two months of his life were touch and go. He spent two months in the hospital's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, coming home in time for Christmas. During his first year at home, he was hooked up to an apnea machine whenever he slept. For the first two years of his life, he was playing developmental catch-up with babies and toddlers who were born full-term. Son #2 was also a preemie, born 6 weeks early, weighing 5 pounds. I had to have an emergency c-section because my water had already broken and I didn't know. And to make the situation more precarious, he was in a breach transverse position. Although he only spent two weeks in the hospital's Step-Down Unit, he was poked and prodded everyday to make sure he was ok before being sent home.

They are my miracles. They have faced so many challenges just in their first two years of life. Everyday is an accomplishment. Everything they do is memorable. I will not hold them back from trying a new sport or joining an art contest, a science fair, a musical production. They excel at everything they do because they work hard. They are naturally good kids. I don't have to ask them or order them to be good kids. They just are.

Am I a proud of them because they win and do well? Of course, I am. What parent wouldn't be?

But what I am most proud of is that they are happy, healthy, caring and respectful human beings. I thank God for blessing me with my three kids. I am a better person because of them.