Winning is not everything, but the effort to win is.
My girl is something of a perfectionist. More often than not I shake my head in wonder at this bizarre behavior. I think everyone wants to do well but she's one of those people that will do what it takes to try and try and wail and gnash her teeth and hit her head against the wall and work like crazy to do well.
I mostly just want to do well without trying.
This school year, her class has been working toward the goal of qualifying to go to the Future Problem Solving state competition.
They've read (and summarized) articles. A lot of articles. On varied topics. Healthy living, air transport, genetic testing. She's developed a whole vocabulary surrounding FPS. (Complete with acronyms.)
The genetic testing "packet" was the major one. The one that would qualify them for state, or not. The night before the state qualifying day, we happened to be eating dinner at Alfy's. The boys were off, noses buried in video games, and Emma sat at the table with us. Our chairs pushed back, the remains of pizza between us, we were sipping on straws and talking about FPS. I looked at my flourishing girl with her serious expression and watched her gesture emphatically and use big words and big ideas as she told us some of the things she'd been learning and thinking about.
She had worked hard. She'd prepared. I told her she'd do fine. She'd be great. I knew it.
And I really hoped I was right because she truly had put a lot of effort into the cause. And she really wanted it.
And when my kids want something, I do too. (Unless it's a pet. I don't want a pet.)
Yesterday the announcement was made at school. Emma's entire class (kudos to her wonderful teacher!) had qualified for state!
Emma told me all about it in delighted tones. She told me about how her class had screamed in excitement and how she had cried. She said, "Mom have you ever cried from joy?"
Maybe once or twice.
Being a mother brings me joy.
Being her mother brings me joy.
Rejoicing with her in her hard work brings me joy.
And sometimes I have extra water in my head and it leaks out.