Our three oldest children brought home their first assignment this week. It’s one they complete each year, and they look forward to it. The assignment is to fill out, color and add pictures to a poster-sized sheet of paper. It includes which are focused on the student and allow teachers and fellow students the opportunity to learn more about them.
On one section that asked what each student he or she wanted to become, Lincoln wrote that he wants to be a painter. Anna wants to be a cake maker which sounds about right. One section asks the children to write Three Super-cool Facts about themselves. Lincoln’s answer of “I’m an interesting guy” made me laugh.
Several areas were left blank which allowed the children to show off their artistic skills and add pictures. I enjoyed looking through thousands of pictures with the kids and helping them decide on a few I could print for their posters. The kids could spend endless hours laughing at the funny faces they pulled for the camera. It was difficult to find a picture where Anna wasn’t either sticking her tongue out or where she didn’t have food or sand on her face.
Kim and I helped the kids attach the pictures to their posters with copious amount of glue. We used so much glue that certain at least one in three pictures will actually survive the bus trip and arrive safely to class.
It was getting late, and I sent the kids upstairs to brush teeth and get ready for bed while I gathered the last few supplies. I put on my headphones and was about to zone out for the night when I noticed Luca’s poster. She’s a perfectionist. I noticed she’s erased some words and rewritten them until they look exactly as she wants. She’s given much thought to her artwork and answers, and I begin to read from the top.
Eventually I come to the section, “My Hero” and Luca wrote “My Dad”.
It probably sounds corny. But these are the small, unexpected rewards that lift my spirit. No matter what’s going on in other areas of my life, and how many mistakes I make as her father, I feel a sense of validation that I’m connecting with my daughter on some level. It’s not always apparent when she’s having a meltdown because I asked her to help her sister clean their room.
But, for now, I’m going to focus on the joy she brings to my life.