What the school reports did

Today was school report day. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Martha’s - her first ever school report. Isla had a report half way through the year. But in reception year, Martha would only get one report; this one. 

I opened the big envelope and delved inside for the smaller piece of paper that would tell me which class she would be in come September. As I announced to the other mum’s around me which class Martha was in, it became apparent that she was in the minority. The others were in a different class. I felt a bit emotional. I’m so awkward socially because of my confidence, or lack of, that it’s taken until these past couple of months to start talking to a lot of the other mums. I was a bit gutted to think I would have to do it all over again with a new set of parents next year. That I wouldn’t be with these familiar faces again after the summer holidays. And how was Martha going to feel? If I felt gutted, surely she would too, to be separated from so many of her friends. Friends she’d begun her school journey with, almost a year ago. There was some reassurance though, I soon found out that she was still going to be with her best friend and another very close friend that she’s been with since nursery days. That made me feel better.

I’d glanced at her report briefly, and saw that every box was the same colour, Martha was exceeding expectations in everything. Wow. Was I surprised? Not really, she is such a clever bright little thing, she’s so kind and loving, no it wasn’t a surprise, but it was really nice to see that it isn’t just me that thinks that she is a superstar. That I don’t think that she is clever just because she is my daughter. I felt incredibly proud. Then I read the teacher’s report. Her summary of Martha and Martha’s first year at school. Now that made me proud, an emotional tear-jerking kind of proud. School can see how kind and considerate she is, how she shows empathy towards others, how she just wants to be friends with everybody and what a nice polite child she is. School can see that she is passionate about things and through the comments I knew that she is a well liked little girl. I don’t know anybody that doesn’t or wouldn’t like Martha. She really is that kind of child. But it was amazing to read somebody else’s evaluation of her.

That report made me feel amazing. I’m the Mum of a wonderful little girl, a little girl who at such an early age experienced a huge, life impacting tragedy. A tragedy that needs working through still, but that hasn’t held her back in any way. Despite all of the odds, she is succeeding and she is succeeding with style.

I was equally proud to read Isla’s report, but it wasn’t a detailed report like the one we received for her half way through the year - it was just a few ticks in boxes that told us that she is exactly where she should be. Perfect. Especially for a little girl who doesn’t like school.

What the school reports did, was to show me that we’re ok. We’re more than ok. My children are growing into the little people I always dreamed that they would. Academic ability aside, they are genuinely nice, caring and kind children. Other people think so too. I’ve done ok raising them. All of those days that I didn’t think that I was good enough, didn’t think I could be a good mum, didn’t know how to be mum on my own, didn’t know what the right things to do were, all of those times of questioning my own abilities - they became insignificant today. I’m doing ok and they’re doing more than ok. They’re doing me proud.


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