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Why I Cut My Daughter Some Slack When She Gets Short With Others

To my daughter,

The day we received  your diagnosis I told myself and everyone around us that “this is not an excuse for her!” I told them the expectations for you will be the same as those we had for your brother, and we’d expect you to do your best to reach them.

And you have.

You’re an amazing girl who quite frankly doesn’t get enough credit.

After this past surgery you proved to me how amazingly strong you are. Watching you hauled out of bed and forced to stand for X-rays two days after having your spine fused showed me what a warrior you are. You didn’t cry or complain, not even a whimper! Then, several minutes later, while waiting in the hallway in your bed to be wheeled back to your room, you complimented a woman on her makeup. I can’t imagine the physical pain you were in, and yet you forced a smile and a compliment to make someone else feel good. You’re amazing!

It’s been quite a journey through recovery, and you’ve taken it all in stride. Only six short weeks later, you’re back to riding the bus and making it through a full day of school.

It’s easy for others to forget what you just endured because you seem absolutely fine.  So when I got a call the past two days from the school that you were “short” with your  words, I reminded them you’re still healing and might need them to be more understanding and flexible. And then, when I got an email yesterday that the same thing had occurred, I let it go.

When your cried to me the past two nights about this, I didn’t let you see my heart break. I continued on with my no excuses rule, same standards, blah blah blah… I never told you I asked the school to be more understanding. Instead, I told you that you were wrong, you can’t act like, blah, blah, blah!

The truth is, I spent most of the night awake thinking about this.

When they contacted me today for the third day in a row, and I saw the phone number on the caller ID, my blood began to boil. Instead they were calling to tell me some kids in the cafeteria made you cry.

That was my breaking point. I hung up the phone and stood in the kitchen and cried. I’m still crying as I type. My heart breaks for you. How can anyone not see how strong, brave, kind and amazing you are?

My sweet girl, you’re a warrior! If you’re short with your words, so be it. I would be too if I was enduring what you’ve been going through. Sometimes you deserve an excuse. You deserve to hear you’ve been brave. You deserve to hear you’re a trooper.


On a regular day you have to work twice as hard as everyone else just to get through the day, and even when you’re not six weeks post-op, there’s an overwhelming amount of doctors appointments. So yeah – guess what? Some days you deserve to be cut some slack.

I can’t wait to see you when you get home today. I can’t wait to wrap my arms around you and tell you it will all be OK.

I will remind myself in the future that what you have to go through is far different and often much harder than what most kids your age do and that sometimes you need a break, an excuse and for me to let you know I understand.

Thank you for being the warrior you are. Thank you for always trying your hardest. Thank you for always having a smile on your face and giving the world’s best hugs. Thank you, my sweet girl, for being exactly who you are and allowing me the honor of being your mom.



This post originally appeared on Successful, Exceptional Education.

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