Tales of a 4th Grade Nothing

Having a 4th grade daughter, brings me back to my own 4th grade year. Overall, I do not have fond memories of my youth. Sure, I do have some good memories and those are usually the ones I choose to focus on, but if you ask me to think back to a specific year in my life, my first recalled memories are usually negative.

Things I recall from the 4th grade:

  • Two of my friends and I liked the same boy whose name was “Joey”. My friends had a sleepover together one night and wrote Joey notes telling him my boobs were small and that he should not like me. I was crushed that my so-called friends who do that to me. (Side note: My breasts ended up being so large that later in life I had major breast reduction surgery!)
  • Later in the year I like a boy name Kevin. I decided to tell him on his Valentine card. Once I had written and sealed the tiny card, I changed my mind about confessing my undying love so I scribbled on the envelope hoping it also scribbled out the words on the card. It didnt and it was terribly embarrassing.
  • I did NOT like studying our state history. I refused to do a packet of work. I did not care what the result, I simply refused. The teacher gave me a detention- my very first ever! I was mortified and terrified of what would happen when my parents mother & stepfather found out. I stayed after school and the teacher worked by my side. She would read the question and then read the passage that contained the answer and I would guess wrong answers just to spite her. She stayed patient with me and eventually we got through enough of the packet that I earned a C (probably only my 2nd in my entire 4 year elementary school career). She ended up having to drive me home and spoke casually along the way as if nothing happened. I couldn’t understand how she was able to separate her feelings like that.
Now that Daffy is in our lives and I look back at my worst 4th grade memories, I am embarrassed. How could that possibly compare to the list of things Daffy will remember from her 4th grade year?
Things Daffy will probably recall from the 4th grade:
  • Living in a group home with people that stole her things
  • Meeting yet another “Forever Family” that she was sure would break her heart
  • Transitioning to a new school over an hour’s drive away from everything she knew
  • Being assaulted by her biological brother numerous times including being strangled by him
  • Her brother going to a psychiatric facility
  • Her brother going back to residential care
  • Her brother getting expelled from school and moving to another residential treatment center
Things I hope Daffy will recall from the 4th grade:
  • Meeting the family that will truly be her Forever Family
  • Meeting her new pets and falling in love
  • Making a new best friend
  • Starting with her new therapist and beginning the hard work to deal with her losses
  • Chats with me every night
  • Mickey & I advocating for contact with her former foster families and her biological mother
  • The many “firsts” she will experience in our family (Christmas, Valentines Day, St Patricks Day, Easter, Mothers Day…)
Only time will tell what Daffy will choose to remember of her 4th grade year, but I am hopeful that in the end she will reflect on this as being the beginning of her “happily ever after“!
Thanks for the writing prompt that inspired this post, Mama Kat’s Losin It!

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