Parent teacher conferences tonight went really well. Almost all positives, only a couple of things for the boys to work on. All in all, I couldn’t be more proud of them. They’re a couple of great kids with good heads on their shoulders most of the time. Of course, I’m very thankful for that.
But that’s not what I’m writing about today. The thing I’m thankful for today is being able to look at them through a different lens. In my head I have these expectations and perceptions of who they both are and how they both react to things. Spending as much time with them as we do I can’t help it, I totally have paradigms of each of them and just expect that those thoughts are always correct. Going to conferences reminds me that there is way more to the boys than I think.
Between seeing them interact with their teachers and other faculty I got to see different sides of their personalities. Somethings were spot on with my ideas, but others were just a little different. Watching Dominic’s confidence when talking with adults made me smile, I sometimes get worried that he’s a little too shy. While I get anxious about Gavin’s ability to sit still and focus we see him calm down and focus on one thing at a time. Hearing the stories, examples, and progress from the teachers helped me see other sides as well. There were different strengths that I sometimes don’t recognize or pay enough attention to. Dominic’s ability to work with anyone. Gavin’s competitiveness and ability for great self-reflection. There were so many nuggets from the night that I am having a tough time remembering them all.
It was a great reminder for me to watch the lens I’m wearing when I look at the world and try to see it for what it is, not what my brain is twisting it to be because of my previous experiences, preset paradigms, and false pretexts. I still remember someone telling me long ago to envision the lint screen in a dryer. Before interacting with others I need to remember to clean it out and start fresh. That’s what the parent teacher conferences helped me do tonight, clean out the filter and see the people my boys are growing up to be. I’m very thankful for the opportunity to see them clearly from a different angle.