Parent teacher conferences are synonymous with an interrogation, grilling or even a public debate. I spent about 12 years being on the other side of that debate. I was the one calling the shots, telling parents what their children’s strengths and weaknesses were academically, socially and behaviorally. I was comfortable having the tough conversations with parents because I truly had their children’s best interests in mind. I wanted to see their children succeed and had built strong relationships with my students and their parents.
Now that I am the parent in the parent/teacher conference, I have found that these conversations are tough. We just recently sat through our second conference of the year. We moved in the spring and Nicholas had to change schools. His teacher requested the conference to provide us with an update on how he’s adjusting and to touch base on his 504. For this conference, I made sure that my husband would be there as well. He was traveling in the fall and missed that one. I wanted to go in with as much support on our side as I could. I was ready. I was prepared.Â
The conference began at 9:50 am. I was sure to arrive a few minutes early in hopes to go in fully relaxed and ready. Fortunately, the prior conference wrapped up early and we got to sail right in. We started out the conversation discussing his love for math and the 24 Game. We talked about how he was reading well and how writing is his least favorite thing to do. In fact, he fully avoids writing. He attempts to dodge it in any way he can. If there is a writing prompt with a full page of lines to fill, he will maybe write two sentences. Nicholas hates to write. As a former teacher, I can’t make him love writing. All I can do is try to provide him with every opportunity to write about things he likes. Write about things he is interested in. However, the time will come where he will have to write about something he doesn’t want to write about.
We wrapped up the conference at about 10:15am. All in all it was a pretty smooth experience. No debates, no battles, no interrogations. We browsed his messy desk, found a few books stashed in other parts of the classroom that belong to him. We discussed how he loves to read and almost does it too much. We said good bye and headed on out.
As I crossed the threshold of his classroom, I realized that this was the first conference we didn’t say a word about hemophilia. We discussed so much but not once did we talk about Nicholas’s bleeding disorder. It was a “normal kid” conference. I was a little shocked. It was just a reminder that Nicholas is growing up so quickly and hemophilia is just a small, yet very important, part of him. We are at a place that hemophilia is not all consuming.Â I know that this experience could be temporary, and hemophilia can rear its ugly head at any time but, for now, I am going to enjoy this moment!
Carrie lives with her husband Mark, and son, Nicholas, and daughter, Aleesia, in Maryland.
*Note: “Infusing Love: A Mom’s View,” is a blog collection of personal opinions and a representation of individuals experiences. While extensive efforts are made to ensure accuracy of the content, the blog entries do not represent HFA or its Board of Directors. The blog is also not intended to be construed as medical advice or the official opinion/position of HFA, its staff, or its Board of Directors. Readers are strongly encouraged to discuss their own medical treatment with their healthcare providers.