I know I wrote about Yaya’s grade 7 graduation speech. It was an ill prepared speech with words all jumbled up and no continuation. I was mortified sitting among all the other parents and listening to my child screwing up what could have been the highlight of the evening. I was really annoyed with her because she could have asked me for help and together we could have written a better speech. But then I thought about it and realized, I am only upset because I was worried that other parents would judge me and actually for a 12 year old, her speech was not too bad and she needed to learn from her own mistakes. If I was going to write her speech, then she will never learn her own strength.
Today is election day at her school ( for next year) and Yaya is determined to win. I could hear her practicing her speech standing in front of the mirror in her room. I was so tempted to read her speech ( and of course minukkuffy a bit ) I didn’t because I as her mother must have faith in my child more than anything.
Just before dinner, she came out of her room, wearing red plaid jacket ( red not yellow, because she is Yaya not Iggy) and skirt, white knee high socks and asked me “mom, do you want to hear my speech?”
“of course” I replied.
“As there are a few of you who don’t know me, I’d like to start my speech off by telling you all a little about me. My name is…….
First thing first, I’m a realist” She sang that line
I am not going to spend this speech promising you the unachievable but I will however try my best to persuade you to vote for me as your ….. captain for next year.
I believe that I am qualified for this role because I really do enjoy the diversity of our school as well as interacting with other teachers and students. Because I enjoy helping and contributing to this school I have participated in numerous social and cultural events and projects such as UN day, open days and peer support.
One of my favourite things about this school its multiculturalism and I want to encourage this by initiating more opportunities in this area. Even something as simple as keeping the students informed of cultural events around our world or encouraging participation in events that celebrate our diversity such as UN day.
As …. captain I would like to make new students as this school feel as accepted as possible. Having lived in numerous places around the world, I know how hard being in a strange, new environment can be for some students. Being a new grade 8, on my second day of school, I remember how a group of older students walked over and introduced themselves, talking to us in order to make us feel less nervous. I hope to be like those older students and foster this sense of acceptance that I first felt in grade 8 and continue to feel everyday, whether through more programs like peer support or by simply talking to students.
I really love this school and what it has shaped me to be today and would be honoured and proud to be a school leader. Giving back to my school what it has given me these past 4 years is really all I want, so vote … as your … captain for 2015.
I am very happy with her speech.
Of course this speech is nowhere nearer to what I ‘could’ have written. But I am 43 and Yaya is 16. And when she is my age, she will be a better speech writer than me..That is what being a parent is all about.. watching your children take those tentative steps to adulthood and allowing them to find their own strength and capabilities and enjoying their achievements.