9.12.2011

Dear Seth, Jonah, and Finn...I'm writing to tell you that

your education is important to me. And to support your educational experience I promise to do the following this school year:

Seth: as you have just turned 13 and are more "primal teen" than anything else, and because having me at school is sometimes embarrassing, even when I've made sure there isn't any broccoli in my teeth and I've showered so I smell nice (btw, showering really is a good thing you know. Water won't melt you),  I know that these last nine years have been rough at times. After all, your mom has always been a room parent, an active PTA president, vice president, secretary, and legislative committee member. I've been in the paper, on the news, and basically constantly "in your business" because I've made your business my business, then told everyone about your business either in a blog, on facebook, or on twitter. And although all of that is because I just want the best in education for you, your classmates, your school, and this district, I know that, quite frankly, you were expecting a break this year. Sorry. It hasn't quite turned out that way.

But I can promise this: I will not use your educational experiences as background in any of the stories I relate this year. However, even though I will keep your business yours, I will still be involved in your business, because you are my business. Got it?

PS. I will also keep encouraging you to participate in track and bug you about the excessive time you spend on the computer. However don't look for me to communicate that to in an email or text. We will have one on one conversations. Even if all of your responses are monosyllabic.


Jonah: I've also promised you that I won't be a room mom this year so you can feel a bit more independent. However, as you are navigating a transition year (from elementary to middle school) I will be making sure that you do all your homework (notice I said YOU will do YOUR homework. I will drive to get supplies for a diorama, but I will not be gluing items into the diorama. Even if I have to physically restrain myself from doing so). I will help you (as I do with your brother) to find volunteer opportunities and I will support your participation in extracurricular activities (either after school or on weekends as they are scheduled). I will continue to take you to the library and find books about Greek and Egyptian mythology (fact and fiction), and when the new Hobbit movie comes out (whenever that will be) you and I will be the first in line.


Finn: All of the work I've done these last nine years have actually been for you, (even though it has probably felt like it was being done too you as I have often had to travel for PTA or Mom Congress, or had to attend meetings (so many meetings) and often times you have had to go with me). Thank you for being so incredibly patient during those meetings, because those meetings were about you (and all of your new classmates and all of their older brother and sisters, etc), even if you didn't know it. So, my promise to you is this, if I am at all able, all of my meetings will be during the day while you are in school, so when you are home from school we can share about your day without me telling you that I can't talk now because I'm in a meeting.


For all of you I promise this: I am going to continue to advocate that you and your peers be afforded the best educational opportunities that are available. That the adults who say they care about children and education, step up and prove it. That the arts remain as valuable to your education as STEM. That for every PTA and Common Core State Standards meeting, workshop, blog, tweet, text, facebook, and email that I participate in, when we are together (especially on the weekends) my cell phone and laptop will remain off and you will be my priority. That I will always do my very best to be available for field trips and school events. For every article I read such as the Countdown to School Success or the Parents' Guides to Student Success, I will read a book to you or with you, or talk about what you are reading. I will work to find a better balance between Myrdin and Mom for all of us. I know that I always say "I'm one and only one..." so I will work harder to encourage more parents to join Parenting's Mom Congress on Education and Learning on Facebook so others can connect with parents around the country who are standing up for great schools. I hope that in addition to creating more volunteers and advocates, I'm also able to help other parents make their schools great through grant opportunities like the Mom Congress School Transformation Grant contest and win $20k for their school.

The more volunteers, the more advocates for education, the more engaged and involved parents and families, means more of my time with you. This is what it all gets down to. The more parents who are engaged in a positive way in education means more positive educational experiences for you to be engaged in and with.

So Seth, Jonah, and Finn, because you are the reason I do what I do each and every day, I promise to give you the very best of me so you can be the best of who you are. Because I know that "the true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit" (~Nelson Henderson).

With love,

Mom

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