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Last year when my son received The State Assembly’s Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement, I wanted to do back flips through the auditorium. First of all, I had no idea that he was even receiving that award and second, it was the highest award that you could receive! When they called his name, I wanted to act like I was Dominique Dawes at the Olympics and do a triple somersault to the stage, pump my fist in the air and scream, “YES! That’s MY baby! HE DID THAT!!” I could not have been more prouder.
I can not explain how much validation came from my son receiving that award. All the hours that I worked as a retail store manager, yet coming home and making sure that his homework was done correctly and that he read 30 + minutes a day, plus, the workbooks that we did on the weekends and during vacations to improve his skills, all paid off. Although TJ had earned that award, I felt like “WE” had earned it. My son, the product of a single mother, who worked 50+ hours a week, who had to depend on sitters and family members to care for him while I worked nights and weekends, won The State Assembly Award. It all was worth it, at that very moment.
As I walked up to the stage to take a picture of my son, the genius, I smiled with pride and with tears in my eyes because I knew that although I was all alone on this road called parenthood, I was doing a good job and we were going to be alright!!