Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Best Darn Pencil Tapper

Right now, I have to say something that is just tugging on my heart.

It's awards time.

There are the awards ceremonies for the kids that have the best grades and have achieved amazing scholastic heights. And there are the kids who come home with the paper certificates that say things like "Best Door Greeter", or "Best Speller", "Most Cheerful", and so on.

There are times when I just think it's silly how many meaningless awards we give out, because we think everyone has to have one.

But now, as a Momma, there is an award I have to give. "Best Darn Pencil Tapper."

Because I have one. He is an amazing pencil tapper. He's got rhythym, and endurance (he can probably tap longer and harder than the honor students), and can drive an entire class nuts in record time.

Why does he deserve this award?

Watch out, this is where my heart is so full.

You see, this kid goes to school day after day and year after year putting on his "good face" when inside he is dying. No one else but his family gets to see that. None of his teachers have seen his absolute frustration knowing that no matter how hard he tries, no matter how much tutoring he goes to, he doesn't understand until about 2 months after the test, but by then he is already 6 or 7 other tests behind.

He gets the assignments in all his classes and his brain shuts down from overload. He thinks about all the assignments and realizes that it is like gathering feathers on a windy day. He will not be able to gather all that information from his brain, let alone compile it all into a brilliant paper with annotations.

After days of encouragement from his family he chooses one assignment, the one making a video, spends days on it, and turns it in late because he couldn't get it to export to the right place. And rather than ask for help, he silently, again, struggles knowing there was another thing he couldn't do right.

He looks at the other kids who put out papers as though Shakespeare lives in their back pockets, fly through the math like Einstein, and generally succeed at everything placed in front of them, and silently aches that that is not him.

Oh, he has gotten the paper certificates at times for being the best pencil sharpener, etc. but what I really wish is that his teachers could comprehend what is going on in his brain. How much he wants to succeed, and now after so many years of "school failures" doesn't believe it is possible, or shuts down completely after one failure, because really, why try anymore?

So for my son, and for all the other pencil tappers out there, I want to take a minute and honor you.

I applaud you for going anyway. For each and every day that you walk into those schools where no one really understands, way to go.

For trying over and over again, even if it is only because your mom or dad begged you to try again, because you love your parents you keep trying.

For not acting on the intense anger and frustration you feel about not being able to do it "right."

For being the nice kid, who really understands that there are other kids who also don't get it and you don't make fun of or belittle others or their ideas.

For being the class crack up, because without you some weeks, or months all that would happen would be the same old, boring, day to day stuff.

For being the kid who has a head full of miscellaneous ideas and info, because that is how you think and process in small, random bits.

For being the kid who has the wild and crazy ideas that make for fun videos, interesting science experiments and fun lunch times.

For being the kid who makes friends with everyone, because you know how it feels to be labeled, and looked down on.

There is so much to love about you and celebrate in you!

Your grades are really just a letter on a piece of paper. Yes, those letters can get you places, for a while, and I don't want you to give up on doing your best.

Those other parts of you, are the qualities you will carry into the rest of your life. When you are 40, no one will know or care what you got in High School English. But they will know if they can count on you to help in a crises, they will know if they can trust you with a burden they are carrying, they will know that if they fail, you will not see them as a failure.

Congratulations my pencil tapper!

You are the Best Darn Pencil Tapper I know!

I'm so proud of who you really are!

I love you!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Prime Real Estate

I will probably never forget our first house buying experience, which was years ago, and subsequent buying experiences since then.

We were shopping in a particular price point and seeing what we could get over a period of several weeks. We saw everything: cookie cutter homes where you could get lost trying to find yours because it looked like most of the other homes on the street, homes that were older and had charm, ones that had been "let go" and others that were "well maintained."  We weren't seeing what we were hoping for or really anything we wanted to invest our money in, especially when we were just starting out and this was the biggest investment either of us had ever signed our names to.

One day, taking a break, we decided to visit a new home subdivision and tour the houses.

They usually have several models at different price points and you tour all of them, which we did.
It didn't take long for me to utter, "I would never pay that much money for this house!" To which the realtor replied, "Then it's not the house for you."

I have come to realize that she meant more than she said. Of course, if I fell in love with it because it was everything I ever wanted, I would probably go to a lot of trouble to figure out a way to buy it. I would want to snatch it up immediately before anyone else could. It wouldn't be the house for me, if I couldn't see the potential in it.

If I put my house on the market, I will tend to want to sell it for what it is worth to me. I know all of its charms and perks. I know the quirks and flaws better than anyone. Some houses we have put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into, to make it what we needed/wanted it to be. Because of what it has meant to me and my family and perhaps because of the joys or memories tied to it, that will elevate the price.  Because it means something to me.

How do you personally feel about being prime real estate?

Do you realize that you are?

I'm serious here.

Do you realize that God designed and built you just the way you are, just the way He wanted you? He knows all your charms and perks, He knows all your flaws and quirks. He knew the home He built and what you would be able to make of it.

Then He sent His Son to pay the highest price to get you back.

He paid that much for you! You are his cherished prize! He wants you back and the paperwork has already been signed!

How often do we feel we will never be enough? We can never make up for our mistakes, we can never fix what we have messed up. That a renovation is impossible because we just can't afford it.

He has already claimed you as PRIME REAL ESTATE! He is willing to make any necessary renovations. You have been paid for!!

Look at you! Do you need some touch ups? Maybe so, WHO DOESN'T????

But don't let that stop you from seeing yourself as He sees you!

And don't let that stop you from letting Him come settle in on your front porch or in your living room to share time with you and love with you. He wants to!

Don't forget the value of Prime Real Estate.

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