If you sat and watched a plant all day you wouldn't see much happening at all, but if you leave it and come back 24 hours later you'd certainly notice the difference - perhaps a new leaf, a flower bud opening up when yesterday it had been firmly closed,
It's a bit like that with Missy. On a daily basis, her tantrums mean that we, unfortunately, don't always notice the positive steps forward. But comparing two events this past week with the same events last year have really shown what huge steps Missy has taken in improving her confidence and lessening her anxieties.
Last Tuesday it was the turn of Missy's class to lead the assembly and tell the school and us parents all about their big project. This included each child having words to speak and the whole class singing three songs. Turn back 12 months to last years assembly, we watched Missy stand there, occasionally mouth a few words but otherwise just stare out at the audience. We willed her to smile, to enjoy it. At the end, when the parents could give their kids a big well-done hug, we went up to Missy but she told us to go away with a thunderous look on her face. She didn't want us there at all.
Another event last year was the school talent show. Missy had the chance to take part with a group from her class but on several occasions refused to practice. The teacher and I discussed it at length, her anxiety, her reluctance, her refusal to perform and decided that she wouldn't take part. Of course, Missy was upset and couldn't understand why she didn't get a medal.
Back to this week. Wow! What a difference a year makes.
At the assembly Missy, whilst a little nervous to begin with, soon relaxed, joined in with all the songs, knew all her lines and all this done with a big big smile. After the assembly, she was so happy to see me. She ran up to me and we enjoyed a big hug and kiss. I told her how proud I was of her and her smile grew bigger. She loved being on the stage and taking part. She loved that she knew all her words. I beamed all the way home.
Then on Friday it was the talent show. This year as there were so many entries, the teachers could only choose three acts from each class. Missy had been practicing at home all week, mindful of what happened last year. Before we left for school, we had a chat about what might happen if she and her friends weren't picked but thankfully they were and the school got to hear their rendition of One Direction's 'Best Song Ever'. Seems they sang pretty well as Missy came home with a medal for second place around her neck! I beamed again.
It was delightful to see how far forward her confidence has moved. It's times like this past week that we need to bring to mind when she's having a meltdown and I think I'm being a crap parent. Things are moving in the right direction.
In other news, we've booked a week away in the sun, a bit of a last minute decision. Ahhh, the sun, the heat, how I've missed you. We can't wait!