Dear school teachers, dear school admins, dear society, I get it. She drives me crazy too. But Kylee, my Bug, is never going to fit in your round holes. Don’t force her to conform. She can’t. Although it pains me, I won’t make her. She’s not built like everyone else and that’s what makes her unique. She’s clever, she’s cunning, but she’s not cut from the same cloth that you are. Don’t make her think that she’s anything less because she’s different. She’s not less. She’s different.
Don’t get me wrong, when she’s awake, when she’s making me doubt my parenting skills, I get frustrated too. But then I step back and really look at her. I look deeply into those big blue, knowing, defiant eyes, and I see the spark. When I watch her peacefully sleep, I see her “normal”. And it’s in those moments that I know that my square peg is anything but less. She’s more. More than you’ll ever know because you don’t give her a chance. Give her rote activities and she won’t do well. Challenge her creative side and you’ll surely see her shine. No, she’ll never fit your round hole, but her square peg of a self might just make a difference in this world if you’ll just let her never-easy-to-deal-with self shine. Let my baby shine. Let her be the difficult little thing that she is now because there is amazement in those defiant eyes. They defy the world because the world doesn’t accept the square pegs. Many a square peg has created light, the telephone, and flight. Embrace the square pegs.
Stop worrying about your state’s scores and start worrying about our children. For the first 3 years of her school career, she was in advanced classes. I pulled her. She started to struggle. You know why she struggled? Because she was bored with your state standards. She was bored with your lessons. She was bored with your tests. She was tired of being a square peg that was being shoved into your round holes. I grew tired of it too.
I get it. You’re doing your job. You’re very kind. You want my daughter to conform, to be round. But if you sit down and talk to her, I mean really talk, you’ll understand that you’re making a grievous error. She’s difficult, I know, and I apologize for that. I do mandate that she conforms on a behavioral basis and you’ve all confirmed that she does. But I will not force her to conform just for the sake of testing. I embrace her square personality and I defy you to shove her in your round hole.
So, I guess what I’m trying to say, with this ridiculously long rant, is that although she frustrates me too, I “get” her. I once was that square peg being shoved in that round hole. I didn’t fit. I probably never will. In fact, I don’t want to. I love my rough, square edges, and I love hers. Leave her alone. Let her be different. Different is good. Different is not less. Different is more. She’s more than you acknowledge. She’s more. She’ll always be more. Different. Be frustrated, be annoyed, be angry even, it’s OK. But remember that “different” leads to great things. She’ll be great if we just foster her right to be different. She’s not hurting you, don’t hurt her. Don’t shove her in that round hole. Just don’t.