I often hear from teachers and friends “Your children are so well-behaved and confident.” It is true, they are however it has not always been that way.
I remember the nervous feeling that came over me dropping Kendra off to kindergarten. Joe and I had searched high and low for the perfect school for Kendra. We finally, decided on a Christian school. We were so excited to watch Kendra grow and learn! The opposite happened. The teacher did not like Kendra, at all! Everyday we picked her up and the teacher had a new grievance
“She talked out of turn”
“We met Mr. BORING today” when asked what that meant we were informed that Kendra told her, when asked if she liked an activity, that she thought it was boring.
“Your daughter started talking before I even said AMEN that is not acceptable!”
She succeeded that year. She knocked the confidence right out of her.
Joe and I had choices to make.
We could be angry
We could see the situation as hopeless
We could rebuild
We chose to rebuild.
How did we do that? How did we teach our daughter to be confident?
- We taught her that failure is not final.
- We taught her that people will hurt you but they do not define who you are.
- We taught her that when you get knocked down you get back up again.
- We told her everyday that she was beautiful, loved and nothing would change that love for her.
- We allowed her to ask questions and express frustration.
- We convinced her she had a voice and others needed to hear it.
- We taught her at very young age that she had a belief system and we let her form her own.
I will never forget the day my husband had her read a very controversial book. She came to me with all sorts of questions and stated she didn’t know what she believed anymore. I was panicky and called him to find out what she was reading.
He laughs and says “It is ok I purposely picked that book because I want her to start forming her own belief system.”
We allowed her to talk
We invited her to wrestle with life at 9 years’ old
Ultimately we have taught her to be her and our confident girl came back. She is now 13 still confident and beautiful. I am proud to be her mom. I hope she will never stop discovering who she is.