Some mornings, like this morning, we add in the extra task of finding something to take for show and share. I remember show and share as a child - I was horribly shy and show and share day was worse then going to the dentist for me. When that first show and share calendar came home and I realized Mikey would have to be put through this torture my stomach turned at the horror of it all. Picking show and share objects is a task that I just wasn't all that excited about and I went about it with very little enthusasm those first few times. The first time Mikey started with show and share he was only 3 years old and still what others would call "non-verbal" and so picking show and share items was even harder. As that year went on it became more difficult to come up with items and finally one day out of desperation instead of finding something for Mikey I told him to go into his room and bring something back for show and share.
Mikey returned with oen of his favorite balls - a simple red ball - nothing special about it at all. I bit my tongue but wanted to tell him to go find something else - something "cool". Instead we packed the ball in his bag and went off to school. I explained to his aide what his show and share was so that she could help out on the explanation part. At this point Mikey had done very little verbalizing in the classroom and had stuck mostly to his picture cards and signs. Well when his turn came up for show and share, he walked over to his backpack and got his ball. He even pushed the aide's hand away in the process so that he could get it himself. And then he stood proud and held up his ball and said for all the world to hear... "Maaa Baaaaaa" (aka My Ball!) and stood and started passing it around. Want to talk about "Red Light Moments"... when the teacher told me this story at the end of the day this one came back to hit me like a ton of bricks!
As a mommy, I want to set up a world where nothing can hurt my child. I wanted him to have the best show and share - the one all the other kids would envy - the one that would make others want to be friends with him because he had such cool things. He obviously wanted something a lot different - and a lot more logical then what I was going after! It struck me that I had to redefine my dreams for him. When he said "Maaaa Baaaaa" that day the teacher said that the rest of the class about went over the edge with excitement about him saying the words and they loved looking at his ball and passed it around as if it was the most amazing thing ever.
I used to think that this parenting what about teaching and guiding your child to help them to become a "good" person and I'm learning over and over again that he is probably not the one who is learning the most in this whole set up!