Friday, January 18, 2013

IQ is Just Another Number

Being an educator I know that Emma turning nine is a big deal in the school's eyes.  She no longer becomes "developmentally delayed," but an actual category or label now.  Now, every time someone picks up her IEP they will first read her IQ score. 

I had emailed the school to please send me the results before the meeting so that when I saw the numbers it woldn't be the first time.  They graciously allowed me the time to process this information. I thought I would crumble into a fine pillar of dust when I heard the news, but I didn't.  When Emma was born the one thing I wanted was for her not to have the category she is going to recieve, but to have other health impairment.  I thought this would be the worst thing for her.  It isn't.  The worst for her would be if I saw her as a number, and I don't. 

I understand that it is just a number.  But, I also know that to some people it isn't.  For some people it will be a reminder of all the things she can't do.  However, I choose to see these things.

  • A little girl who has worked so very hard to overcome the simple things we take for granted like learning to talk, walk, and read.
  • A child who belly laughs so hard that she gives her self the hiccups and we all tumble into a heap of laughter.
  • A precious girl who never, ever gives up.  She tries again. And again. And again.
  • My daughter is strong and I would like to think she gets it from me, from my example, but I draw on her strength each day.  I watch her persevere and I think if Little E can do it, so can I.
  • She has a sense of humor that invloves playing jokes, albeit, not always at the right time, but funny, nonetheless.
  • A darling, caring heart that hurts for others when they are hurt, that says, "I'm sorry" when she's wrong, and hugs those who are experiencing pain.

These things have nothing to do with the magic number that has deemed her "less."  As human beings we should never categorize or label those that are different.  She is not less.  She is not different.  She is a girl who's life isn't passing me by.  She is a girl who loves so deeply that I can only hope that my love repays what she gives.  She is a girl who will one day live on her own, have a job,  and hopefully find love. 

But she is not a number.

She is my daughter.

Little E.

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