I talk a lot about my job and my children’s school and lucky for me, it’s one and the same. Once upon a time before children, my corporate job lacked the “means something to me component” and so when the time came to choose, it was easy to walk away from the j-o-b. When the school that began with “a dream and vision” came into the area, it took a leap of faith to move my children from their plenty wonderful school. I simply wanted something different for them. I worked for the school part-time in PR for a while, and when it was time last year to take the front office job that would get my foot into the door for a full-time position, I was nervous. I LOVE to love my job – and with writing about the vision of the school, loving it was easy. What if the day-to-day activity in the office ruined the love fest? Worse, what if I found that my decision on my kid’s education was wrong? Better now than later, I surmised.
One of the philosophies of the school is the Love and Logic concept. It’s a philosophy that allows children to make mistakes at an early age and learn from them. It’s about accepting the natural consequences of our actions and learning to move forward. It is the “anti helicopter” movement, if you will. In education, it is creating an independent journey and accepting that parent support comes from empathy and hugs – not dropping everything to take something to school, doing half a project, slaving over hours of homework, or God forbid, eventually setting up a college interview for someone who is an adult. Because, what employers are seeing these days, is the helicoptering never stops and the breakdowns with let downs in the twenty-something entitled group are epic. I was raised to be pretty independent so it was easy for me to not only love the concept, but to also go to bat for it every day. And boy, did I go to bat for it every day. When a parent/neighbor/friend would try to drop off a forgotten project, band instrument, potato chip bag, pe shorts, etc, I was ready to rationally explain the policy and try to help people understand what they had signed up for when they chose the school. Inevitably, I was told that it wasn’t the child’s fault (yes, we rely on others in life and others will let you down – even parents…great dinner conversation tonight) and the child is normally so responsible (yes, and responsible children deserve to learn lessons like this also). Unfortunately, rarely was I afforded the time to explain these things…just told that it was stupid and that I was mean…..and then they stormed out the front door.
I learned that even if parents bought into the love and logic philosophy, every parent has their line in the sand when it hurts to let their child fail. For some, it’s the forgotten potato chips to go with lunch, for others it is something bigger than that. For all of us parents (as I remember my parents saying) this is going to hurt us more than it hurts you. But when you don’t swoop in to save every time, the grace when you do is never forgotten (go back and reference my Fathers Day blog from last year if you don’t believe me).
My biggest hurt from Love and Logic this last year did not concern my own children. I have been thinking about it since the day it happened last winter, and I am just now able to write about it. It is a day that affected many in our school and solidified for me that I signed my children up at the right place. The worst day of the year, the saddest one, was the one with the biggest lessons…and I am finally ready to share it. To be continued……..