So the kids are getting out of school and today was their second to last day of school, and there were awards.
I have grown to be leery of awards.
I always dream of getting them--the "creative comeback to imaginary insults" award is my absolute favorite, followed by the, "yes, your life is so hard and you bear it with such grace" award. So far, none of those have been forthcoming and I live in disappointment. I shall just have to bear up and assume someone out there is doing those things better, and be glad that those stations are filled with such power, grace, and style.
But when I was a kid I got scads of awards.
I got the "You know your place function" award for math in the fourth grade, and the "nice suckup kid" award for students who didn't really get along with their own peer group in sixth grade. I thought my crowning achievement in the awards department would be the "benchwarmer" award--also known as "Best Sportsmanship"-- received in the 8th grade. I got it on the merit of being the worst athlete in the school, and yet joining every sport.
My basketball coach told me I was the third string of a nine-woman basketball team.
She thought she was being nice.
But I loved that award--that was even better than placing 6th in the district spelling bee and getting to say Benediction at 8th grade graduation, because I had the 9th highest GPA in three grammar schools.
And by the way, if these awards are inspiring you with my mediocrity, I confirm that with my final two awards-- two years of perfect attendance in high school and "Most Disorganized Senior" of my graduating year.
I was stunning in the awards department.
So I'd almost forgotten awards season in the Jr. High and the Grammar School.
When ZoomBoy showed up with blue lips and a medal.
The medal was for Most Improved in PE-- he was so proud. There were two best athlete awards and one Most Improved, and given what I have obviously passed down to my children in the way of physical prowess, I told Mate that we were going to have to take that as the only win we'd get--and that we should be proud.
I mean, DAMNED proud, because it meant somebody recognized all the work he does, trying to be the best he can be.
His blue lips were proof of the other award--sour candy, because he got his straw rocket to perform four different target tricks. He got a package of candy for each trick, and had one package for himself and three to share with his friends.
Did I mention damned proud? (I seem to remember him getting an award last year for thinking outside the box and asking super questions. ZoomBoy--forever an original, right?)
And then Squish showed up with a light up purple squinchy thing that she got for being "The student with the most gratitude."
She also got recognition in class for being "Student most likely to cheer someone up."
Did I mention that when we went to see her State Report during Open House, I was a little disappointed? It seemed to be lacking some detail, but when I asked the teacher about it, she said, "Oh yes--Squish did a great job on her poster. I think she wanted to do more, but there was a line of students next to her desk, asking her if they'd done theirs right, and she helped everybody she could."
So today she was recognized for apparently being the best Squish a mom could ask for.
So there you go. Awards day. I have not gotten my "Best Writer In All of Creation" award, nor have I received notice of my "Creative Comeback in the Face of Imaginary Insults" award.
But today, my kids brought home their "Best Kids In All of Creation" awards, which, for me, translates into, the "You may have lived a life of mediocrity but your children are spectacular and superlative and you are blessed every day you know them" award.
I accept this award with my husband, holding it for safekeeping. Someday we'll pass it back to our beautiful children, grown, and, I hope, as happy in their lives as their father and I.
We really DO have the Best Kids In All of Creation.