April 25 12

I receive many, many emails from my children’s school—early closings, performances, graduations, Scholastic book orders. Truth be told, though, because there are six teachers between my three children, and I often receive the exact same piece of news from all six of the teachers, I tend to skin most of the emails that come in. And sometimes I just click the lovely delete button and they go into the trash as quickly as all those annoying Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy emails I wake up to every single morning.

Sometimes, though, an email comes in that makes me stop, makes me reread (at least twenty times), makes me so proud.

My son recently did a project for school. Because he’s not the keener that his older sister is, I didn’t really hear much about it. He did not do any of the things that Emily does in the months and weeks leading up to presentations. He didn’t print me up a supply list or ask me to help him cut out bubble letters. He didn’t want to read me his speech 642 times to make sure his projection and infection were perfection. Different drummer he marches to. He had a long time to work on the project, but because he didn’t want to taaaalk about it all the time, I sort of forgot that it was even happening.

A few nights before the presentation, he finally came to me to ask for some art supplies. He finally came to me and asked me to print something. He finally wanted to discuss the project.

My first instinct was to get upset—Why did you leave this to the last minute, Joshua??

But then I realized what was really happening. He had done the research—lots of it. He had planned out his visual presentation—all of it. He had written his entire speech—and memorized it. He just needed a little help with the execution process.

He had done the entire thing himself; He didn’t need my help or even want my help.

And then I read this email.

Just wanted to congratulate Josh on a wonderful presentation on Friday. His personal connection made the presentation so meaningful to him, and this was evident in the way he spoke. His delivery was wonderful, his research well done, and his answers to the class’s questions showed his understanding of this wonderful charity. The class enjoyed the follow-up activity too! He really is a wonderful speaker and his “acting” ability shines through. Well done Josh! You should be proud of yourself!

And he was. Proud of himself.

But not as proud as I was.

And I’m so thankful I took the time to read the email.

And that my son marches to a different drummer—because it’s a pretty good one.

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  1. That is a beautiful post. Kids can be so different and special in their own ways. Sounds like he did a wonderful job and it is great that the teacher recognized and shared it. Congrats to him and good for you for celebrating their differences.

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    Comment by Corey Feldman on April 25, 2012
  2. Beautiful post, you have a lot to be proud of and grateful for. Your son is very blessed to have a mom who recognises his drummer.

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    Comment by Michelle on April 25, 2012
  3. So often as a Mom I am reminded of the glaring differences between my two daughters. Give yourself a pat on the back for being able to not only recognize but embrace your children’s differing personalities and offer your son the respect and space to excel on his own terms. You’ve made me think how I might do better. Thank you for sharing.

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    Comment by Tracy P on April 25, 2012
  4. What a wonderful email. And a wonderful teacher for taking the time to send it. Special little guy you’ve got there!

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    Comment by Jana A (@jana0926) on April 25, 2012
  5. I’m glad the teacher took the time to email! Especially since Josh isn’t the talker Emily is, so you might not have known all that.

    Tell Josh the Tickle Monster said good job! :)

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    Comment by Kristabella on April 25, 2012
  6. I’d be printing out that email and also keeping it in a file never to be deleted. How awesome.

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    Comment by Gamanda on April 25, 2012
  7. He’s so sweet, your son.. and very handsome, too. You SHOULD be so proud, Ali. xo

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    Comment by Loukia on April 25, 2012
  8. He is so cute. Your kids are great, AliMartell. I hope mine turn out half as well. xo

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    Comment by heather... on April 26, 2012
  9. Aww! I would about burst if I got that email. So awesome. Yay Josh!

    Also: you said keener. That is SO Canadian. :)

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    ali replied on

    Keener is Canadian??? I HAD NO IDEA!

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    Comment by Rebecca (Bearca) on April 26, 2012
  10. Well, I have only ever heard Canadians say it, so I assume it is??

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    ali replied on

    Now I must ask twitter…

    [Reply]

    Comment by Rebecca (Bearca) on April 26, 2012
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