Thursday, September 29, 2011

It's that time of the year again.

Next week is Emily's final year exam. So it's stress for me & DOUBLE stress for her. I have asked her to stay home this whole week so I can study with her. Coz if she goes to school, she will be dead tired by the time she come back from school and revision is just not possible anymore. So she only went to school today to take her violin exam.

Realistically, I am not expecting any extraordinary result. She has put more effort this year. But she has a looongg way to go. Picture a 10yo calculating with her fingers to figure out 10 minus 1 is 9. Or struggling to figure out 2,600 comes after 2,599. Or memorizing excretion means "removal of waste product from your body".Too many big words. Too abstract. It's painful. To both of us. But it's a real struggle for her. Not to mention most of the stuffs she learnt today and finally get it, she will most likely forget them tomorrow. And after all the effort that she put in, she will most likely fail almost all the subjects. And I will tell her again and again, it's OK...u will get there eventually...u just have to work harder. And I honestly don't know how long the verbatim will work. For her. And for me.

The past 2 days have not been easy. There were tears and frustration. In moments like this I wish it is easier for her. I wish she doesn't have to go through the pain. I can continue wishing and wallowing in self pity. But nothing will change. So I keep reminding myself of Stephen Covey's story of the Chinese bamboo tree.
"After the seed for this amazing tree is planted, you see nothing, absolutely nothing, for four years except for a tiny shoot coming out of a bulb. During these four years, all the growth is underground in a massive, fibrous root structure that spreads deep and wide in the earth. But then in the fifth year the Chinese bamboo tree grows up to eighty feet! Many things in family life are like the Chinese bamboo tree. You work and you invest time and effort, and you do everything you can possible to nurture growth, and sometimes you don't see anything for weeks, months and even years. But if you're patient and keep working and nurturing, that "fifth year" will come, and you will be astonished at the growth and change you see taking place."

I honestly had no idea when is Emily's 5th year coming. But I pray hard both of us will have the strength to persevere until it comes. And once it comes, we probably can do the silly victory dance together oh yeahhh....hahaha...sorry...I just need some humor.
I have been toying with the idea of homeschooling her for a few years. Bcoz I have been reminded again and again that she probably learn best from me. Parents are the best teacher because we know our children best. One good example is her quest to learn reading. After few years in kindergarten, 6 months in a government school and 6 months in a dyslexic school the most Emily can read is "A fat cat sit on the mat". It took me a while to figure out that she simply didn't understand phonics. So I spent 30 minutes every night teaching her how to read using the phonographix method.
I followed every single step. Step by step. And wallaaaa....after 3 months she's reading. Independently. She finally reads at 8yo. Same story with her struggle with the multiplication table. Took me a while to find what works. But it finally works.

The truth is the main reason I put her in school is for her to learn how to beat the system. I am hoping that by coaching her closely, she will eventually get the hang of how to work around her weakness and thrive academically. I don't know whether I am right but I hope I am.

And to learn how to socialize. Being a social misfit, that is a gigantic task for her. I still stalk her FB wall...just to make sure she didn't "borrow" somebody's money and didn't pay back..OR took somebody's stuffs without telling and think she "borrow" it...OR say something inappropriate in her chat wall....sorry for being nosy, but a mommy just got to do what she needs to do :(

I discussed this issue with her headmaster last year. And the school counselor. And her teachers. Most of them think she should stay in school. Despite her issues. Coz they think that's how she will learn to be better. Keeping her at home will probably gives me less headache and heartache in the short term but do more harm to her in the long term. This morning I came across Gever Tulley, founder of Tinkering School talking about 5 dangerous things we should let kids do. He talked about how protected the kids are nowadays. How the parents "bubble wrapped" the kids. I do hope I am not bubble wrapping my kids. Especially Emily. So let's just pray I am doing the right thing.

Let's just pray tomorrow will be easier. Let's pray that we will do our silly victory dance s-o-o-n. Amen.


  1. Amin. Every cloud has a silver lining.
    I pray that ALLAH gives you & EMily the strength to go through this obstacle & may both of you will do your victory dance soon (amin).

  2. Ameen. Linda, Allah blesses Emily to both of you be cause He knows that you both can do it, and has lots and lots of love, potential, resource, etc. And cliched though it may sound, he does it for a reason. I am sure both of you have charted many a victory, although these victories may not be in the form of a string of 'A's or mental arithmetic!! Jangan putus asa dengan rahmat Allah, ssghnya Allah itu MAHA pemurah, MAHA penyayang, MAHA Alim dan MAHA.....Love, Mak Di :)

  3. Afnan...terima kasih ;)
    Mak Di...sniff2..sob2...tengkiusss ;)

  4. Linda, we need to meet and share our stories, soon! Hang in there! I too have to remind myself to banyak bersabar...although most of the time I keep forgetting the hardship my daughter goes through. Makes me really guilty when I lose my temper and sad that most of the time I could not figure out how to make it easier for her. InsyaAllah we will all get to do that victory dance together! - Nora

  5. Salam Nora, u got dyslexic kid too?? Ada blog? Share with me pls ;)