Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Finding an Achor

I needed some music therapy this afternoon. I started working part-time a couple weeks ago. But today, I had to work a split shift with a crazy picking up/dropping off of Daniel a few times with a very understanding friend/babysitter (in the pouring rain). This included transferring the car seat each time and cell phone on the low-battery. I missed several calls and almost missed a vital text.

I was twenty minutes late picking up the elementary kiddos who were huddled in the picnic pavilion waiting patiently. But then two fought over the front seat, and because my judgement wasn't as wise as Solomon's one ended up screaming at me and his brother and refused to buckle his seatbelt (so we could all go home) then, when he did, told us all he hated us. Thanks, and all that. Once home, he refused to leave the car. I insisted. He got out, slammed the door so hard, I was surprised it didn't break a window, and I swatted him (not nearly so hard). Then he stormed upstairs (good...time out for the both of us) and I walked the dog in the pouring rain.

Then when I was dry, the other boys proffered their report cards and I looked them over. Well done, the two of you. I took out the one of the boy who was upstairs and nearly broke down in tears.

This boy can be so sweet and so kind and so thoughtful. He always has the highest praise for his angelic behavior at school. But he had nearly straight "1"s through all the criteria for literacy and math. This translates to mean he is achieving low levels of progress toward meeting standards.

Everything from: Reads with fluency and accuracy, through Uses addition and subtraction strategies to solve two-step problem solving.

In December when I sat down with teachers and staff and heard the results of the tests that he took, I was relieved because they backed up my gut feeling. This son is smart, but not in reading or even with some math skills. Yep, IQ is 120. But my 8 year old can't read much more than a beginning first-grader. But at least these tests meant that he qualified as a child with learning disabilities and could receive the help he needed.

But looking over the report card, it felt like I was standing back out in the rain, but this time without a jacket. What will the future hold for this child? How can I help him? How can I help all of them as I am feeling weary and so unskilled for their needs, emotionally and academically?

And what about my dreams? I took a break from writing during the holidays and now that the computer is "fixed", Microsoft Word sometimes thinks that it is 2010 and I cannot access my manuscripts when I want to work on them. There is an opportunity to attend a writing conference in two months that I was feeling all sparkly about a few days ago. But reality, budget and time restraints open my eyes to the truth. Not now. Not the season.

So on this cold, dreary January afternoon. I needed something to cheer me up. This song has pretty, it has color. And it reflects the cry of my heart to my Heavenly Father. In the midst of crazy and confusing and feeling unable. He anchors me to life, to truth, to hope.

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