Dear Adam and Micah,
We are only on the beginning stretch of a long adventure together as Adam, you enter first grade, and Micah, you are in preschool. But your education has been on my heart and mind since before you were born. See, I’m a teacher as well as a mother. So, even before you were born I would teach other people’s children and could only imagine what it was like for them to trust me with their babies. I would imagine what my own children would look like (blondes?) or be interested in (Baku-whats?) and dream about our future. That day has come, and now I’m one of those parents who must trust the caring teacher in the classroom who has committed their life to your education. And as a parent, I promise to do more than my part!
I promise to get you to school on time every day with a full tummy.
I promise to navigate the school and district and know how to advocate for your needs.
I promise to communicate daily with your teachers and have an open relationship with them so they can talk to me about anything I should know.
I promise to read all the notes that come home and sign every form.
I promise to provide you with an organized homework space with all of the tools you need to be successful.
I promise to study with you for spelling tests and read to you or with you every night.
I promise to ask you to share your “happy, sad, happy’s” with me every night so I can gauge your emotional tank.
I promise to know your friends and their parents so you can be surrounded by a village who cares for you.
I promise to support your ever-changing dreams and passions.
I promise to cheer for you in every sports and arts endeavor you may choose.
I promise to give you opportunities to learn about life outside the classroom by showing you the world.
I promise to give you opportunities to serve those around the world who don’t have the resources you are fortunate enough to have.
I promise to teach you to respect diversity and be confident in your own uniqueness.
I promise to learn to let go. And let you fail. So you can learn to pick yourself up and try again.
And more than anything, I promise to be your safe place, where you come when things are tough, where you celebrate when you succeed, where you cry when you’re down, and where you rebound when you try again. You are my boys and I love you more than you will ever know.
Mandy Grisham is the 2011 Mom Congress delegate from Memphis, TN. This post is part of the Mom Congress Back-to-School Blog-a-thon.