Be still my heart
Friday was Bella's last day of first grade. When did my first born get so big? When did her eyes get so green? How did her legs grow SOOOOO long? When did she become so aware of the environment around her? How on earth can I have a child going into second grade? When did my baby become so aware of other people's thoughts and feelings?
The boys and I took her to school, gave her teacher a gift and then walked down the hall to see the Kindergarten rooms. G-man will be starting next year- insert sad mommy face here- We left then came back for lunch and recess.
I watched at recess how Bella interacted with her friends. Most of all, I watched how she looked out for a sweet girl in her class. S has autism. Bella has said multiple times how you have to talk a certain way so that she'll understand. She even packed up some Dora stuff in her backpack for S because she LOVES Dora. Bella helped S on some of the playground equipment and gave her very simple one word instructions to follow. S followed along. When recess was over, Bella ran over to S and made sure she came in. Bella told me "Well she doesn't know what they are saying when they yell in that thing and I don't want her to be left out here"... My heart melted.
Bella has said many times that she wants to grow up and be "Ms. C". Ms. C is S's aide in the class. She's the one that's with her most days all day. Bella really admires that Ms. C takes her time and listens to S's needs and helps the other kids if they need it too. Bella has voiced time and time again how she wants her job. Ms. C tells Bella she's saving it for her. She talks about it constantly at home. I love that her heart is so kind and gentle. She genuinely cares about S and how people treat her.
Watching Bella takes me back to the days of elementary school. Students like S were in a special room. All of the kids that were "different" were in that room. Some had feeding tubes, wheelchairs, autism, diapers... a variety of needs that they didn't think could be met in the classroom. I was constantly volunteering to spend recess in there or help in that room. I was drawn to those kids and Bella is too. Her heart is one of kindness and sincerity. I am beyond honored that she wants to be Ms. C. I wonder if she'll someday be a nurse or some sort of aide in a room like this... or if they will continue to "mainstream" these kiddos into the classroom.
I honestly love that they are mainstreamed and have their own aides. It teaches our children to be kind, to be accepting and to be considerate of the needs of others. It shows them that there are people there giving all of them to help these kids, like Ms. C. This allows teachers, like Bella's, to continue to teach the class while the aide can meet the needs of the child who needs him/her. I love what Bella has learned this year from watching Ms. C and S. Most of all, I love that she's my daughter and she has a heart of gold!