Here lately I'm finding that I do not have enough hours in a day. Between a fairly long commute (31 miles one way), the full-time day job, my children, spouse, editing and polishing my story, studying up on grammar, thinking about my next story, blogging, researching agents and the publishing industry...I might be leaving something out... You get it. Loads of items on the list and only 24 hours in a day with 6-7 of them devoted to sleeping and 8 of them taken up by the folks who deposit money in my account and give me health insurance-there's little time for the other things. My exercise regimen has fallen by the wayside because otherwise my sleeping would fall to around 5 hours. And to top it all off, now I'm sick.
But, two things came to light last week that made me drop almost everything in my list above. Report card day happened. For the most part, it did not surprise me, he was where he needed to be for most things and the items that were on the lower side I knew about, except one. It leaped off the page and slapped me square in face and told me that I was a terrible mom. Okay, not literally, but it might as well have...An item at the bottom of the page was checked that said 'I have a good self image.' I verified with the key needed to decipher the report card-it meant-needs improvement. He doesn't have a good self image? Why not? He's intelligent, good looking, good personality...how could he not feel good about himself? There's nothing wrong with him. I tell him all the time how wonderful I think he is...don't I?
The teachers written remarks in the comments section stated something along the lines of that he is easily frustrated and he swings back and forth between perfectionism and half-assing it. I'm paraphrasing here.
Me, being me, I then research kids on self esteem and self confidence and building of both. My initial findings centered on attachment parenting and infants...And that's great and all but I have a 7 year old and whatever happened as an infant is gone. I don't get a redo of that. Did those months I spent in postpartum depression have that big of an impact? Surely all of the nurturing that I've done since then have made a bigger impact. I've gone in search of more. I've read and went down lists of items to build your child's self esteem and checked them off one-by-one. Then something stuck out- make time to ask your child questions and converse with him/her and really listen to the answers without multitasking your adult responsibilities at the same time. This shows your child they are important. OUCH! Nope, I haven't done that in some time.
Also, there was to get down and play with your child in activity of their choice and put aside your phone, computer or whatever else you have to do. For at least a little while.
And that is what I have done. I will, of course continue to blog. But sometimes it might have to go on the back burner to put some special boys first. And I hope to continue to research the subject and provide some entries on my experience in attempting to build him up. I'm not sure why he's such a sensitive child, he always has been. My main job is and always will be to parent these children and grow them into good men.