Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spelling Bee

Both of my kids were in the top three in their class when the grades of their past spelling tests were reviewed and averaged out.  Because of this, they were both told they would be one of three representing their class in their grade spelling bee.  They were given a list of words to practice and told that the spelling bee would be on January 20th.

We practiced and practiced some more. 

My Princess was thrilled and told me that she was going to win.  She exuded confidence and determination...fitting first born personality. 

My Middle Man, on the other hand, dreaded the day, hated to practice, and told me that he knew he wasn't going to win.  He was so unsure of himself and lacked the confidence that he could do this...but his Mama knew he could.

One the morning of the 20th, both of my spellers woke and were not in good spirits. 

My Princess said that her throat, head, and stomach hurt...all signs that she has strep.  I was so concerned for her...not only because she wasn't feeling well, but also because I knew the goal she had set before her.  I asked her if she still wanted to go to school.  She told me yes.  I explained to her (since I knew her bee would be right when she got to school) that when she was finished winning, she could go straight to the nurses office and call me and I would go to the school and get her.  She liked the idea so I gave her a dose of Motrin and sent her on her way with a prayer and a hug.

My Middle Man was so scared.  His stomach hurt, but for a different reason than my Princess.  Before it was time to get coats and shoes on he started to cry and told me he didn't want to be in the spelling bee.  I held him and tried to comfort him.  Ever since seeing The Help, I have been taking my kids' faces in my hands (or whispering in their ears) and saying, "You is kind, you is smart, you is important."  It always brings a smile to their faces.  So, I took his face in my hands, looked him in the eyes, and told him those words.  He giggled a little bit.  I told him that I knew he could do this and it didn't matter to me if he won or not, I was so proud of him for making it in the top three of his class.  So, I sent him off with a prayer and a hug...and Mama had a bit of a stomach ache herself.

I was watching the clock and at 8:45, I began to pray for them.  I was expecting to hear from my Princess anytime after 9:30 or so.  The phone didn't ring.  At around 11:30, I checked my email and there was an email from Landon's teacher telling me that Landon did so well, she was so proud of him, and he won for his grade level!  She said that he actually looked like he enjoyed himself and was excited.  Then, a few minutes later, I got a message from another 2nd grade teacher that I know saying that both of my kids were grade level winners.  Tears filled my eyes and I whispered prayers of thanks...and Mama was so proud.

Around noon, I got a call from the school office saying that Kaitlyn was running a temp of 100.4 and I needed to come get her.  I hurried to pick her up.  I got her in the car and she said she needed to go straight to the doctor because she felt so terrible.  I was so proud of her strong will and determination to hang in there long enough to win.  I asked her if she felt so sick while she was spelling and she said, "I didn't feel any pain while I was spelling.  It felt like there were angels all around me," and I knew that it was because of the many people that were praying for her that morning.  She also mentioned how big her brain must be...so big that it was getting squished inside her skull...maybe we shouldn't tell her how smart she is anymore.  I got her right in to her pediatrician and sure enough, she tested positive for strep.  My poor baby.

Landon came home from school later that afternoon and was all smiles.  I was so happy for him and hoped that this would help build his confidence.  Unlike my Princess, he has no idea just how smart he is...even though we tell him all of the time.  He told his story to all of us and said, "I was so scared to start, but then when I was spelling I thought, 'this is pretty easy!'"  He makes me laugh.

Tomorrow is the school wide spelling bee and no matter what place they come in I couldn't be any more proud. 

I think this calls for more cake pops.

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