Saturday, July 24, 2004

It's the aftermath of Parents' Day and the final wake up call to students who think the finals are still far off in the distance. It's a bit rude to bring parents in to play the role of tolling bell, but they have the right to know how their investment in the futures of their offspring is paying off. Different reactions from different parents, not always predictable by the results we deliver. I observe them all and I think of my own parents and the sleepless nights and grey hairs I have given them in my time. The worry, anxiety, concern, and , yes, underneath it all, the love they have for their kids; I've made Mom and Dad experence all that as well.

I know what it's like to deliver a poor report to the old folks: the initial apprehension, delay up to the absolute last minute, followed by the sharp words, the tears, the disappointment, the advice the admonishment, blame and worse. None of it makes any difference though. It doesn't make things better, it doesn't make things worse. It just... happens. Occurs, as if it wasn't happening to you. There's always another test or assignment to fail tomorrow, anyway. And so the cycle goes.

All this I experienced at 'O' level, and by the time I failed to get a cert from the VITB (ITE now) it was just resigned acceptance. My point being that my students are showing results today that are better than mine ever were when I was their age, but parents will always fret over what has not succeeded and discount that which has been accomplished. Fact of life for parents, I suppose, though it doesn't make life any easier for their kids.

Kinda' makes me wonder about my ability to raise a child.  I was at Mom's place for dinner tonight and the chaos and noise the 3 grandkids were making was sloooowly driving me insane. My sister's kids are already quite obedient and manageable. Nevertheless, from the excited, raised voices competing for attention, to the roar of cascading toys and components of toys and accessories being tipped out of their container, to the incessent screeching of some unfortunate miniature vehicle being dragged over the floor by ungentle hands, I could not bear to imagine life continuing throughout the day like this when only a few hours' of exposure could already elevate my stress to near unbearable levels.  Next time someone asks me when I'm going to bring another screaming child into this world, I'd like to know if that someone is offering to take care of it on my behalf first. Ooh...! How bitchy!

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