Last week, Mary brought a note home in her backpack saying that her teacher wanted to spend some extra time with us tonight at SSP's (parent teacher conferences). This sent off some alarm bells in my head, so I decided to gently ask Mary how school was going.
As soon as I asked her, the flood gates opened. I was blown away with everything that Mary unloaded, and the tears she shed, and my heart was broken. She had been struggling a lot, and had kept it a secret. She got really behind in math, and was having to stay inside during recess in order to try to do math problems that she couldn't solve. She was hiding her spelling tests from me, because she was embarrassed, and she was just a mess.
To top it all of, she had lost her glasses months ago, and was too scared to tell us. She keeps them in her desk at school, so we had not idea she wasn't wearing them. She hadn't been able to see much in her classroom for months.
There is a lot more to this, but I will stop there for Mary's privacy and for the length of this post.
Mary is a smart girl, and we have never punished her for struggling with a school subject. This was a case of Mary's guilt prone personality, not being able to see, and getting too far behind to be able to catch up. All of this combined, did a big slam on her self esteem, and she was feeling dumb and self conscious.
It was so heartbreaking.
I called her teacher, Ben and I both had some really good, long talks with Mary, she knows that we are here to help her and that no one is mad at her, we have a new homework schedule all lined up, and Mary got contacts!
We were a little nervous about her being too young for contacts, but I made the appointment anyway, and Mary was soooooo excited!
The eye doctor told us that Mary's glasses wouldn't really be helping anyway, because her eyes had gotten worse, and he said that Mary was the first child he has ever seen to get her contacts in and out on the first try. That's my Mary. Where there's a will there's a way.
After one day of having her contacts in all day, I kept on hearing things like this...
"Hey mom, did you know there is a mountain behind the Thorne's house?" (my jaw almost hit the floor. How did she not see that before!)
"Mom, did you know that those things hanging down at the tumbling gym are actually banners with names on them?"
"Mom, did you know that my teacher writes our daily schedule on the board every day?" (she has done this all year)
The past few days, Mary has come home with more and more "revelations." It is half heart breaking to me that her eyes were this bad, and half wonderful to me that she can now see all of these things!
I am really excited to see how much improvement Mary will now have at school, and in her life in general.
So, there you have it. My 10 year old is wearing contacts...and loves them.