Last Tuesday, I attended my last class and submitted my final assignment for this semester. I heaved a sigh of relief, but the relief was short-lived. I discovered that my to-do list was still long and the tasks ahead required perseverance. May the Lord provide all that I need!
Aside, I have still been feeding myself with words of wisdom from the Clarksons. I read a few chapters from Different , which was co-written by Sally Clarkson and her son Nathan. In it, Nathan shares his struggles with a host of mental difficulties: OCD, ADHD and more.
The hand of God upon Nathan's life is evident and in the chapters I have read, I was touched by the point made that everyone of us has a purpose on earth, no matter how we are like. I was also impressed that Sally was ever so patient and creative. Upon finding that Nathan could not sit still to read, she provided materials to engage him while they read. For instance, he would draw out the scenes from the stories so that his hands were occupied. This enabled him to connect with the stories which impacted his life.
I also attended a talk by Professor Andrew Brown from UCL. He was supposed to speak about the link between theory and practice in education but ended up sharing his life story. It turned out to be inspiring. He showed a hippy picture of himself when he was in his late teens and it looked nothing like the present him. He dropped out of college after six weeks as he did not like what he was studying nor his environment. He also revealed that he could not read till he was eight years old and yet now he was a professor in the field of education.
Professor Brown also mentioned that teachers tend to view parents like how they view their children. A parent with two children, one high-performing and one misbehaving, found that the teachers of her high-performing child treated her with respect and thought she was a wonderful parent while the teachers of her misbehaving child thought she was a bad parent, when she was the same person.
These things resonated with me as I am sometimes caught in worry for my children: Little An can only read a few words and J is quiet at school (even though he is very confident with us and can run errands and serve guests at home well). I am reminded to commit their needs to the Lord and to creatively provide opportunities for their strengths to be developed.
I also unconsciously wonder how others view me as a parent and this may put unnecessary stress on my children. I am reminded to parent according to God's word and not be bothered by the judgment of others. I also pray that I will have patience, as it frequently wears out with urgent demands of school.
May the Lord continue to mould us so that we can be His salt and light.