On Friday at 3:15 I dropped my conference evaluation into a box, recieved my free conference gift - a combination pizza cutter/beer bottle opener...maybe I'm not the only one who occasionally needs food-and-alcohol comfort sessions - and drove away from my state's gifted and talented conference. It was good...I talked with other people from the city and heard some good information. I developed a healthy sense of gratitude for the wonderful system my kids are being educated in. But as I traveled a mile a minute along the freeway to get home, I little thought kept pushing its way into my consciousness.
Is this supposed to be easier?
I heard a lot of information meant to make me a better and more effective parent, but a lot of the information was old news. Dabrowski's overexcitabilities? Yes, I know them. Gifted kids are prone to intensity and perfectionism? Yep, heard that too. There's an amazing book out about parenting gifted kids? Yes, I've read it a few times and still refer back to certain chapters once in awhile (and yes, I highly recommend it!). Online resources? How about Hoagies' or SENG or NAGC? Oh, and gifted kids should be in a school where they're understood and challenged? Well, my kids' schools aren't perfect, but they're trying to accommodate my kids and my district has a very active Gifted & Talented department that educates and advocates for gifted kids. I know I have it good in that regard.
If I have all of this information and all of this support, why do I still feel overwhelmed?
Maybe it's because I have three kids. Maybe it's because P is 2E, which is just double the fun. Maybe I'm just lazy and expect life to be easier. Maybe the nature of this is just that it's HARD.
Maybe it's a combination.
I do think it's gotten somewhat easier since P was first labeled. I feel less alone and I feel like I have more direction. And parenting in general is not easy-peasy. But at the same time, I don't think this will ever be a walk in the park...more like a hike up a mountain. I guess it's time to strap on some boots and get used to the scenery.