Monday, June 30, 2014

The Law of What-Doesn't-Kill-You-Makes-You-Stronger

Sitting in the principal’s office across from Mrs. Straight-and-Narrow, her assistant and the guidance counselor suddenly I feel like I am the one who is in trouble. 

I skip the pleasantries, pull the two letters out of my purse and lay them on the table in front of me.

I don’t want this to be a confrontation. I don’t want a yelling contest. I just need the explanation about the mystifying discrepancy between the contents of the two pages carrying the same letterhead and the same signature. The letters that have raised the hell’s sandstorm in our lives.

There is … none.

I am informed about the emotional resilience of school age children.

I am assured that the administration and the 5th grade team is doing everything to ensure smooth transition to the third teacher.

When I am told I was the only parent who came to complain, I get a vague sense that I am being scolded for overreacting.

Not wishing to waste either mine or their precious time, I say my good-byes and leave.

You have no idea how hard it was to write that letter.

I look up and see a tiny crack in the emotionless façade of the principal’s face.  I am taken aback.

It would have been helpful if you had communicated something like that in the letter, I say, and am surprised that it was without reproach.

Oh! She seems genuinely enlightened. Thank you for your input.

We survive the remainder of the school year alternating between good, bad and really mean days.

One afternoon at the beginning of the summer break, I ask:

Are you nervous about going to middle school next year?

She looks over the book she is reading,

Nah. After THIS year, middle school is going to be a piece of cake, she shrugs and goes back to her book. 

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