Saturday, February 28, 2015

A Great Day

Every once in a while, the kids will have a day or a moment where my heart almost blows apart with pride. Meaghan had one of these days a couple weeks ago.

First up: Recorder Karate. The music teacher at the school is beyond fantastic. We could not ask for one better. Currently, the grade 4 kids squeak away trying to make their recorders sound like music. The teacher uses Recorder Karate to encourage practice and mastery. The program consists of a few pieces of recorder music. As a kid masters each piece he gets a karate belt for his recorder - a piece of yarn tied around the bell of the recorder. The teacher gives up her recesses to test up to a dozen kids each time.

Meaghan practiced all weekend for her first karate test. Then lo and behold, she heard the announcement for testing, ran to the music room at recess, was too out of breath to play properly, got a second chance, and then received her first belt.

Since it was only the first day for testing and not many had signed up, Meaghan signed up for the afternoon recess, practiced at lunch, walked to the music room with great constraint so she could arrive ready to play, and then received her second belt.

She talked about nothing else after school. And I'm so pleased that she did this without any help from me. Well, listening to the recorder nonstop without freaking out, but rather enthusiastically telling her how great it sounded, did require a fair bit of self-control, but that was my only help. 

Next up: Ballet. It's now daylight when the class ends, so she walked home the few blocks by herself for the first time ever. She even admitted how thrilled she was to do this all on her own. Who cannot enjoy these well-defined moments of increasing independence. Sometimes the moments are little and go unnoticed, but this moment looms large and must be celebrated.

Last up: Girl Guides Badge Testing. Badge Testing is quite the night. Each badge has its own requirements, and each leader seems to have her own standards. After a particularly bad testing night last year in Brownies, Meaghan approaches these nights with caution. 

Meaghan decided on the badges she would try to get. She was confident with two, but with one of them, none of us could say with certainty whether she would actually get it. She decided she would try because the worst that could happen would be that the leader would tell her to do more and try again later. But she got it!!

All of these events in one day. 

I love days like this because I see evidence that Meaghan is maturing, coping with what life throws at her, and gaining more independence and confidence. But more than any of that, I get small chills seeing her realize what she can achieve on her own with some attentiveness and hard work - skills that will see her through most anything in life. 

Me believing in her is one thing, but her believing in herself is everything.

1 comment:

  1. That's wonderful! I bet she'll remember this day all her life. The only musical instruction I ever got was in school on how to play the recorder. I've been playing it now (still) for 45 years . . . It's a wonderful instrument and I hope Meaghan sticks with it.