March was definitely one that I will never forget. For teachers in Maryland, it’s the dreaded month that 3rd-8th graders take the Maryland State Assessment (MSA). We spend months preparing for four days of testing – 2 days of math testing and 2 days of reading testing. I think it’s absolutely ridiculous that we (Maryland) test our students at the beginning of MARCH – barely half way through the school year and expect them to demonstrate that they’ve mastered the skills for that particular grade level. It’s a stressful time of year for teachers and students which is why I hurried back from my maternity leave to give my students a last minute pep talk before testing started.
Right smack in the middle of math testing is when my “I’m losing control” phase first began. Cub 1 has a very high anxiety level. He worries about any and everything before there is even a need to worry. So, during March, his anxiety level was through the roof by the time testing began. He took chunks of eraser and pushed them into his ears during testing. Thankfully a test proctor saw him and mentioned it to his teacher. He denied it, but she sent him to the nurse to have her check it out and sure enough, she could see little pieces of pink in his ear! The whole ordeal continued through July so there is more to share in upcoming blogs. After a couple of visits to the pediatrician and ENT specialist, Cub 1 had to have the eraser pieces and other foreign objects surgically removed from his ears. Things did get better eventually!
Raising a child who worries about everything was not in Parenting 101, however, I’ve learned through experience that you cannot assume that your child lives life worry-free. They are listening and observing everything that you do and say…before they can even produce the language to say so, they know what’s going on. As parents, we have to make sure that they have the skills to deal with all that life will throw at them. Otherwise, they grow up to become adults without the skills needed to deal with life! I know that I don’t want ANY of my children coming back to live with me when they are adults, so I’m doing my part now to make sure that doesn’t happen!
Peace and Blessings!