This was my 6-year-old son’s school report card. He is in elementary as a first grader. Obviously, no parent would be pleased with such low grades like these. And yes, I admit that I really got upset and disappointed when I attended the parent-teacher conference.
I talked to him the following day to the extent that he cried and got upset. I felt so bad, but as his concerned mother I thought it was my duty to make him understand that his education is very important.
But then I realized something… I know sometimes he can be stubborn and disobedient. I realized that he is INTELLIGENT in a different way. Why do I think so? Because he is that type of kid that would always tell me things like these:
“Mama, tomorrow is my classmate’s birthday. Can you prepare a packed lunch for two, please? Rice & two eggs so that I could surprise her.”
“Mama, my classmate didn’t have money during our recess that’s why I gave him some of my money so he could buy soup.”
“Mama, my classmate said his hand is aching and cannot write, so I wrote notes for him.”
“Mama, when I grow up I will buy you a car so that you won’t get very tired with me and my baby brother. I can see you’re struggling every time we cross the streets.”
“Mama, I will save money on my Piggy bank so that you and Papa will have funds for your church wedding.”
I paused and thought for a while. Is this kid really a kid? I guess he’s really a grown-up man in a kid’s body. But there is one instance that really brought me to tears. That’s when he told me about his prayers at night and he said…
“Mama, you know I cried while I was praying to God. I beg him to make me smart so that you won’t get angry at me anymore. Because I feel so dumb. I already know how to read a little bit but I still got low grades.”
That really broke my heart. My tears burst out. It dawned one me I am being too harsh on him, I profusely apologized to him. I said sorry for all the times I scolded him so hard. I just really want him to grow up to be a responsible adult with the right values.
I also said to him that it’s okay with me if he gets low grades, and just be a good son and I’ll be more than happy.
I remember when my grandfather said that I should not make school grades as a basis if a person really learned something. Maybe, I just expected too much from my son because way back when I was still studying, I would always get high grades.
I’m completely wrong with expecting my son to do the same. I am completely wrong comparing him to other kids as well.
With my son having a good heart and values in life at a very young age, I am comforted by the thought that he will grow up a good person. I am confident I am on the right path to raising a compassionate human being.
I just want to share my story to all the parents raising their kids, our children’s mental health and emotional intelligence (EQ) are far more important than their school grades — these are written with ink but a person’s character is shaped by integrity, love, respect, kindness etc.
This story was submitted to Positive Outlooks by Jheezel Orbina Panga.