The drive to school yesterday morning was dramatically different than the drive we took on his first day. In September we both cried for much of the drive. Yesterday Robby was so happy that he couldn't contain his smile. He giggled and sang songs the entire trip.
Today we will
go back to the school for the final time. The school is having an award
ceremony and Robby is being honored. He has been chosen to receive the
"Student Citizen" Award for the year. I could not be more proud of this
Robby has no qualms standing up for himself and for
others. He doesn't tolerate bullying and instinctively speaks up and
intervenes when he recognizes it. His teachers have told me stories
about my little crusader protecting his classmates, returning snatched
items and his making sure that everybody is included in the chosen
activity. The "Cool Kid Koopa Club," which Robby started as an
alternative to excluding classmates, remained strong throughout the
It is hard standing up to a bully and I know that I
don't possess Robby's confidence and gumption. Yesterday I listened to a
group of parents revel in the tales of making the classroom teacher
uncomfortable. Standing in the parking lot, I was left speechless
listening to the name calling, judgmental and hurtful comments that were
spewed about the teacher whom Robby loves. The Meanie Moms laughed and
actually exchanged high fives when one proudly proclaimed that she made
the teacher cry!
Instead of speaking up, I remained silent. These
Moms were proud of their bullying the teacher and instead of defending
her, I made an excuse to leave the conversation. The fact that Robby is
receiving an award for doing the exact opposite is an irony that has not
been lost on me. This will never happen again.
I spent the
remainder of the afternoon yesterday kicking myself for not speaking up.
I felt bad for the teacher who has been dedicated and loving all year.
Robby is so lucky to have been placed in her classroom. Knowing that she
was nursing hurt feelings from the Meanie Moms, I sat down and wrote a
long letter to accompany the end of the year gift. I know that I cannot
undo the pain that has been caused by the other parents, but I needed to
let her know that she is valued, appreciated and admired.