We had our first parent-teacher conference last night and I think I have been set up for a future of disappointing conferences. This conference set the bar so damn high that we'llprobably never reach it again. True, this is 2.5 year old preschool so we're not talking junior high (oh dear) or high school (hold me). I fear any conference that follows will always start out with "Noah is such a pleasure to have in class but..." and then trail off into "concerns" and "potential". I've seen the movies, I know plenty of teachers in real life. So, while I can, I'm going to brag a little about my kid and his school, fair warning.
Tim was held up at work so it was just myself and Noah's three teachers chatting around a teeny table and sitting in primary hued elf-size chairs. I found this immensely funny because it was just like I imagined it would be, except this time I'M THE MOM in this scenario. It was...surreal. Noah's teachers, Miss D, Miss S, and Miss L, are the three most lovely women I have ever met. They treat the kids in their room, all 20 of them, like they are their own. Hugs are doled out by the minute, tears are always wiped and acknowledged and boo-boos swiftly kissed. I never worry that Noah isn't getting the attention he needs or deserves. I knew these women were special when the first words they said at the conference started out with "Noah is positively one of the most wonderful children we have ever met and we will be so sad when it's time for him to move to the 3 year old room. He is so special and we love him so much." And then...nothing. No "we're concerned about..." or "he's not doing this or that very well". Just smiles and nods and a continued conversation about how wonderful my son is.
Obviously, again, this is 2.5 year old PRESCHOOL. I wasn't expecting any grave concerns about Noah mixing up the letters of the alphabet or learning better impulse control. It's just that...it's so rewarding to hear three people, who are not related to your child, extoll his virtues without bookending the conversation with anything negative. I clearly know my child is a rockstar (what? you don't think that about yours?) but to hear other people think that and tell you brings on the warm and fuzzies. It also reminds you that your child really is special and not just to you, but to other people in his life.
I will be forever grateful to Noah's first teachers. They may never see this space but I hope we properly and effusively convey our appreciation of, and to, them. They make going to work so much easier each day and return to me a happy, well-cared for little boy at the end of it. We went through trial and error to find this school and we're so very lucky. I'm so happy he'll be staying on for preschool this fall and reaping the benefits of even more teachers who love him and cherish him. It may never be "just like mom and dad" but it's a damn close second.