Es el momento
This has been a crazy week! My sons came home last Friday and told me that they were having a Dr. Seuss celebration at their school on Wednesday. The day would begin with a parade and oh by the way.. they wanted me to find them Dr. Seuss-like costumes. So… here I am on Saturday working on their homework (yes.. five and seven year-olds have homework) and then on Sunday we were off on a mad dash to try to find costumes. Finally, I said we could just decorate shirts and they could go as “Thing 1” and “Thing 2”. They were not impressed but to placate me they agreed. WE had tons of other errands so we didn’t have time to get to the t-shirts until later then next day. On Wednesday they had their parade with kids that have artists as parents*side eye* and *sigh* and I was so excited that the full-on celebration was held in the evening. The school had pizza and apple juice for sale and were showing “Horton hears a Who” playing via projector in the cafeteria, computer Dr. Seuss games, a reading room dedicated to books, and an illustrators room where they made hats and a variety of other crafts…* insert Mommy falling asleep at the art table here*
I say this to say that although I wished I could have gotten some rest at some point, I wouldn’t trade doing all of these things with my boys for anything because growing up with a single mom.. she was there for none of my academic accomplishments or activities… First I thought it was because while I was in elementary school her English embarrassed her and that is why she didn’t come. Then in junior high I thought it was because her nursing career was taking off and she was just too tired and/or too busy to come. By the time high school came I didn’t have to make any excuses because I was too used to it to put too much thought into it. Most of my friends’ parents used to cheer me on as well... so... that made me feel okay. As I went on to college to Hawaii … I didn’t have the separation anxiety that most of my peers had because I pretty much knew how to function without parental guidance. I got a job, went to my classes, and found some roommates to my first apartment (did I mention I was barely 17 at the time ... lol). I would change anything because I am proud of who I am today but I knew that when I had children things were going to be WAY different.
When I was in elementary school I was living in Boyle Heights, a primarily Hispanic neighborhood. There it was very commonplace not to see many parents at meetings, ceremonies, or games. In junior high school I went to medical magnets and the parents there were more present. I would say 80 percent of parents came to all of our different activities.
When I had children I wanted to be at everything, but due to work I have to pick and choose what events I can go to, but I try to make it as much as I can. We do homework together and while I am cooking I have them take to turns reading to me. Being in constant communication with their teachers also helps me to feel like I am more in the loop. I was very impressed when I learned from LATISM about Univision’s “Es el momento” campaign because they encourage more parental involvement in the education of our children. They also talk about the importance of financial planning for our children’s college education. Please take the time to go to their website. I am so encouraged that such an organization sees the importance of using their influence within our community for such an important cause.
As parents we are our children’s first cheerleaders. They look to us for support and guidance. We must be able to offer them our time because at the end of the day even if it is an extra 10 minutes to read your kids a bedtime story, believe me, they will cherish those memories and use them as fuel to do better academically. I know it has done wonders in my children. Happy reading!