Yaya has her final maths exam today.

It is a day I dread the most, not because I am worried abour her score, but because I have to survive the night before. She came back from school about 4.45 yesterday. As soon as she came back, she fixed herself a sandwich and started to read a  novel. Ideally, if you have a major test coming up the next day, instead of reading a novel, you use the time wisely and study. There is no ideal situations in my house and I kept my mouth shut.

I made tacos for dinner because I know it is her favourite. And I waited for the storm..

It didn’t take too long.

Right after dinner she told me “Mom, I have my maths test tomorrow, Can you help me?”

I nodded my head.

I learned Maths in Malayalam. My child learns in Spanish. And we both have to meet in “English”

That is still fine with me. But the biggest problem is, she comes to with her ears and mind closed and it drives me insane. Yesterday the topic was trigonometry.

“Mom, I know all the equations, I don’t know how and where to use them” She said

“It is like this” Before I could complete, she said “I don’t want you to explain, teach me how to use the formula”

I know from past experience that we will have world war 3, if I as much as raise my lovely voice a degree higher. I had to literally bite my tongue, so I won’t scream at her.She wants my help, but won’t let me help!!!

Eventually we went through all the problems ( And I loved teaching her, “some people have” “curly brown hair” “turn permanently black”)

In between every 5 minutes she complained “I hate maths, why do I have to learn all these, when am I ever going to use any of these in my life, blah blah blah” I let her rant, for I have done the same many many years ago.

And as she packed her books back in to her back pack, she said


I braised for more tantrums, but the tone was a tad different, so I looked at her.

“Mom, I am scared” She said

“Of what muthey ?” I asked

“Mom, I dream so big, I really want to study in an Ivy League Uni, what if I am dreaming false dreams, won’t it all come crashing down with a mighty bang?”

I looked at my child, I could imagine her fears and it wasn’t a moment for me to tell her one of those famous follow your dreams quotes. Her fears were real..

So this is what I told her.

“Yaya, there are two sets of people in this world. One simply exists and the  one live. It is much easier to exist, follow the paths already trodden by others..But dreams are for those who wants to live..it is your dreams..it is the knowledge that there is a real chance that  dreams can actually come true, that gives you a reason to live and makes you follow your dreams”

“But mom, there are thousands of kids apply to Ivy League colleges each year, what makes me stand out among them?”

“It is you, you stand out”


“Yaya, if I am given a chance to pick any baby in the world as my child, I will still pick you.  I love your determination, I love your dedication and I love the fact that you never give up, and don’t forget, most Universities give you extra points for being proficient in a second language and in your case, you have done very well learning Spanish. ( yaya will have a diploma in Spanish would have done two years of her degree in Spanish by the time she completes her grade 12)

She looked relieved..

I dread the next few years..I know her dreams are lofty..But all these years, I have taught my children to aim for the stars..and I worry if I was over ambitious..

Yaya will be doing pre IB in grade 10 and IB in 11 and 12.Does anyone here has a child doing IB?

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