This Spells Fun

I hope it does.

My daughter informs me she’s been selected for the school-wide spelling bee. Each grade level 4th through 8th at our parish school contributes two students. Tuesday, she and another were spelling champs of their classroom. Apparently, today was the intra-grade spell-off: six fourth graders whittled down to two.

I was very happy. Brittany keeps to herself for the most part at school. She loves to read and play. She’s in the children’s choir at the parish. She had a dance and song group number in the school’s holiday show last night. But mostly, she’s a thoughtful, sensitive, and quiet child. I asked her about the school holiday program; she didn’t want to try out for a lead for a speaking or singing role. Just being in the group was good enough. I often wonder where her natural abilities and gifts will lead. Will she be a teacher? a writer? a veterinarian? a singer and musician?

My wife is concerned a little bit. I was enjoying the news Tuesday and I started talking to myself in the car on the ride home, “Brittany, 4th grade spelling champion. Brittany, school spelling champion. Brittany, world champion of spellers!” Anita cautioned me, saying that our child would be devastated if she thought she had disappointed me. What could I say to that? My parents always said, “Just do your best, and we’ll be proud of you.” So I said that.

This is the first time Brittany has had a chance to stand out in excellence at something like this. I want to express my pleasure and best hopes for success. But I wouldn’t want to turn this into a pressure cooker. I have to pray about this to find the good middle way.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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