Monday, December 11, 2017

Epiphany, today: as I saw Jillian struggle but still work through this semester, my heart hurt. She was overwhelmed with organizing, transitioning & the new learning style of college. It was no longer "memorizing facts" but learning "concepts" & being prepared to answer "what if" questions. I couldn't help. I wasn't in her classes & couldn't help her study, organize or prepare. She fell behind but kept showing up. Eventually, we applied for Trio. This is a program at UT that will follow her through her college years "helping" in whatever way an individual student may need assistance. Some students may need help transitioning to the U.S. culture if they are from another country. Some students may need career counseling, financial counseling, assistance with housing or food. Jillian is taking advantage of the tutoring program. I cannot tell you what a relief it is to see her smile after finishing homework with her tutor. When she said, "It was fun doing the math with him," I was floored! Chemistry formulas fun?! I tried to stress to her that she CAN do the work. She sometimes needs assistance deciphering directions. Often, she struggles more with trying to figure out "what" they want versus "doing" the work.

As we sat in the parking lot before heading to her exam, I caught myself praying. I remembered the phrase: "There are no atheists in the trenches." I wished I could influence an A for her effort-- then I caught myself. How would that benefit her? How would getting a job with a degree that she didn't earn help her? I realized this is why we didn't home school. There must be some struggle & influence aside from a sheltered home or your kid will never be able to function outside of home. I realized, "What good is an A in a homeschooled chemistry course if I kept taking out the struggle so she didn't really learn chemistry?"

I then realized even if she failed, she could use what she learned as a base & take the class, again. Isn't that what I've done with races? I've completely fallen apart during high (self-imposed) stressful situations. I learned, reworked a plan & tried again. I realized why I hated the idea but felt the need to race. I needed someone's unbiased course/event/situation to show myself & prove to others that I had been doing the work. I wasn't pampering myself or lying about my abilities. I would be getting true, raw feedback of my abilities.

I realized then, that our girls will be just fine. As parents, our responsibility is to protect our kids from the world but not shelter our kids from the world. A parent's job is to prepare their kids for the world. I don't mean a cold world of hard knocks by pushing them into the deep end of the pool & telling them that they had better learn to swim fast or drown. I don't mean screaming at them out of frustration. Not even adults like that. -I mean teaching communication skills, reasoning skills, organizational skills, domestic skills, trying to juggle work & recreation, respect...

Again, I realized:
our girls are going to be alright.

No comments:

Post a Comment