Mar 11, 2013

She came

I scheduled her conference about her son Josiah with her today. It's report card week and parent-teacher conferences. I didn't expect her to show.  Let's be honest.  I really didn't.

I waited as the minutes ticked by. One hour later, I gave Josiah (who was doing homework in my room) another paper scheduling another date to meet with his mom this week.

And then.
She was there.

She rode her bike.  She was nervous.  She was clearly trying to dress up for the teacher and very worried she was in the right place, or too late, or that I wouldn't meet with her.

I jumped up, smiled. Had her sit down. Reassured her.
"I'm SO glad to meet you!"

And the first words that popped out of my mouth was, "Your son is the sweetest. I really love your son."

Tense shoulders slumped.  She smiled, and said, "You're the first person who has ever told me that."

And then we were able to chat.
We talked.  Her story came pouring out.  The chaos that is her life.  The chaos that is Josiah's.

And while I can't fix much in a fifteen minute conversation, I can show I care.  That Josiah has value and I see it.  That she has value as a mom.  It was clear she didn't believe that she did in just a few minutes sitting across from her.
There were some suggestions for helping Josiah do better.
I chatted with her Mom to Mom as her other son is in Hunter's class.  I talked to her as an equal and with as much understanding as I could show.

I asked her to sign the parent sign in sheet.
She apologized that she couldn't sign her name well and that I wouldn't be able to read it.
And with that simple statement on top of the many others that she shared, my heart was wrecked.
And she was gone.

15 minutes.