No Experience Needed

Parenting is one tough gig. It isn’t for the faint of heart, especially if done right. I remember when the hospital kicked us out with our 2 day old daughter. I looked at my husband and said, “Why in the hell did they send us home? We’re unexperienced!” That was the beginning of many “figure it out” moments with our daughter.

My daughter, like me, has a very strong personality. She likes to do things for herself, by herself, and on her own time. Now, she plays well with others. However, she tends to need her independent time. She also doesn’t like a lot of instruction, until she wants it. (We’ll blame that one on her father. The one who throws the directions away because he is an engineer and can figure it out.) For example, she didn’t walk until after 18 months old, because she could crawl faster than walking. She could walk, she just didn’t want to.

Today, I had my first Parent-Teacher Conference for her pre-school. The teacher was overall happy with how my daughter met her expectations. There are just a few areas of concern.

One, my daughter has no sense of fear and needs to be repeatedly told not to: climb the furniture, run around the room, or body slam the beanbags. Yeah, I have that same issue at home and on the playground. That’s why I hate to hear mothers of boys say I don’t understand how rambunctious boys are naturally. Yeah, I do. My daughter is a rough and tough girl, like I was/am. She gets hurt and does it again. It is something we constantly work on. But she is 2. They love to run and test the limits.

Two, my daughter doesn’t use words as much as the other kids. She will point and whine, maybe use one word. The other kids are putting 2-3 words together. At home, my daughter is non-stop talking, like full sentences. She asks to go outside to play, for food and drink, sings songs, etc. So, I was taken back when told she doesn’t talk much. The kid talked the whole way on a 5 hour trip…THE WHOLE TIME.

Three, my daughter doesn’t respond with correct answers to shapes, colors, letters, and numbers questions. Again, shocked. She counts with me, sings her ABCs (& other songs), plays with her shape sorter, tells me her colors. She will pick up a magnetic letter and say what it is, without prompting. The same with numbers, shapes, and colors.

How do I encourage my daughter to talk to her teacher. How do I help her open up? Is this something I can encourage? It is situations like this, where I am lost as a mother. Where I know I am not qualified for this job. Where I tend to fill like I am failing her. Parenting ain’t no joke.

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