Lessons in Parenthood: Don’t be afraid to ask for the things you want!

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I have this issue with being (what I consider) aggressive.

When I want something, I can’t ask for it. It’s a complete mental/emotional block – I just can’t will myself to actually ask for things. It’s part fear of rejection and part pride.

So, when my daughter was put on the wait list for the magnet high school that she really, really wanted to attend this fall, I said, “We will see if they extend an invitation.” We kept our fingers crossed.

It didn’t even occur to me to call the school and ask about pushing her up the wait list…I just figured we would wait and see if they ever sent us an acceptance letter.

She made peace with not being able to go to the school of her choice and actually started to get excited about going to our local district school.

I, however, was not so excited. While it is rated an A school (by testing standards), it is in a less-than desirable neighborhood…we’re talking projects lining one side of the school and section 8 on the other.

I know that might seem horrible for me to say, but I went to that school in the 90’s. Yes, if you are a good student, then there are lots of opportunities for you to succeed and excel.

BUT I remember the gang rapes that happened across the street from the school when girls decided to walk through those projects to Burger King for lunch, or decided to take a short cut home when they missed the bus and had to walk.

It’s not where I want my daughter to go to school. 

Last week, a friend of mine met someone considered a higher up at the school my daughter had applied to. She thought she might be able to help me get her in…but I never heard back from him.

So, when my daughter found out the day before her 8th grade prom that her two closest friends had called and landed spots at the school of her choice, I decided to stop waiting and start DOING.

Friday morning, as I was getting ready to leave for the weekend to Orlando, I called the school and asked to speak to the people in charge of the wait list.

I found out that while some spots had opened up, my daughter was still farther down the wait list…


More like…I pleaded.

I asked the woman in charge if there was any way that my daughter could get in…I dropped the P word: please.

And do you know what she said?

She said okay. 

I wasn’t obnoxious, I wasn’t rude, I didn’t make a scene…I simply asked, with complete sincerity, and I got what I asked for…

Why haven’t I been doing this all along?!

The funny thing is, I don’t think I would ever have asked for myself. There have been so many things over my life that I have wanted so badly, but I never had the courage to ask for them! But for my daughter?

I realized last week that even after almost 15 years of motherhood, there are still times when I surprise myself with the lengths I will go to in order to give my child what she needs.

And judging by the hugs and kisses and “Thank you SO MUCH mom!!!” I got from Angeline when I finished registering her Friday morning, I think that I may have just won mother of the year!


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  1. cristy (lisa's friend) says

    wow. you’re an excellent writer… & i too remember the stress on moving towards to high school… the stress… and also… college.

    Good for you.
    You gotta be aggressive sometimes :3

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