As I write this post...I am crying. It's OK....Mothers cry a lot.
The idea came to me last summer.
Three years ago when my daughter graduated fifth grade she received many many awards at her graduation. I was not really surprised, she is a great student that works hard at everything she does.
My son "D" is also a hard worker, but for him it is much harder. He tries twice as hard and gives it his best to get average grades... and never are his efforts met with a tangible reward...almost never.
But he has this quality about him,
I can only explain by saying that this kid is all love.
He will root for his friends and he is always the one who will go to someone that is feeling down and try to cheer them up.
So years ago at his sister's graduation as he proudly hooted and hollered for his sister I thought how much I wanted him to feel that feeling of working hard and getting rewarded for it.
He tries so hard, and quietly he waits his turn only to be disappointed over and over again. He is hardly ever discouraged, he falls, gets backs up and keeps on going. see post-->Successful Kids
His Graduation was a few days ago, and as I wrote before I had a plan.
again, I wanted him to feel the feeling of being singled out, to be told hey you did a really good job from people other than his family.
For two years he was part of Chorus and band , and even though he was dedicated.... almost all his friends were called up to receive certificates...except him.
My heart broke for him, not because he was sad, but because even though he didn't get recognized he still smiled and clapped for his friends that did.
You see if there was a certificate for being kind....he would get one.
if there was a certificate for being polite...he would get one.
if there was a certificate for being giving ...he would get one.
If there was a certificate for being dedicated and selfless...he would get one.
But there are no certificates for those qualities...I wish there were.
So as I wrote before... last year I had a plan. Maybe he wasn't the best student in the school, and perhaps his work would just be average. Average don't get awards. ...but I wanted to find a way for his name to be called out and be acknowledged. I wanted him to stand and feel the feeling of being rewarded just once.
All year I prayed that he would not get sick, because the plan was for him to get the perfect attendance award.
I know I know. Desperate dumb plan. I mean what good is perfect attendance anyway. right? It's not going to help him get into college or make him a better person. He is already the best kid any mother could ask for.
I thought for sure that he would have to take a day from school...I mean the chances of him not getting sick at least once was slim...but as the year progressed...no sick days, no coughs, no fevers, not even a sniffle.
I wasn't sure if they would even give him the award for perfect attendance for just one year. I just hoped.
So as all his friends received certificates for other things....
When they announced The certificate for Perfect attendance I held my breath...
My heart pounded loudly in my ears.
They called out his name
THEY CALLED OUT MY BABY'S NAME!!!!!
He stood there tall and proud.
He smiled a smile that I can only describe as angelic. Now there were others that received this award too,( maybe their Moms had the same idea) but his name was the very first name called.
Later when he walked up to receive his diploma my husband, my daughter and I hooted and hollered as if he had won the Nobel Peace Prize.
Later he proudly showed me his diploma and certificate. He was so proud and so happy. He had a smile from ear to ear. He asked if I could frame his award along with his diploma and I of course said yes!
It's amazing what a bit of paper can do for a kid who always almost gets the prize, but this time it wasn't almost. He got to feel what it was like to stand up and be recognized and I know that he will never ever forget that moment.
My Baby got his moment in the sun and it was great.
The next day he went to school and they were finally going to receive their yearbooks. As all the fifth graders ran around getting friends and teachers to sign, my son noticed another little boy who stood there with his own yearbook in hand. No one was asking this little boy to sign their book. My son said the boy stood there alone and a bit sad that no one was coming up to ask for his signature.
No one noticed....
But my son did.
"Mom, he looked so sad there, no one was asking him to sign their book."
He walked up to this little boy and said "Hey, will you sign my yearbook?" My son said that the little boy smiled and said "sure!" and so they signed each other's books.
D said this boy had a smile from ear to ear.
"It was great to see him smile mom." was what he told me.
One day my son is going to be a great man. He may not have straight A's, and he may not be the best athlete in the world...But someday he is going to be a great man...because he is already a great Kid.
Now I am going to dry my eyes and go out to buy an award frame.