My kids have Spalding words, or spelling words as most schools call them, every week. After school we gather at our kitchen table and I dictate their words while they write them in their neatest cursive script on lined paper. Usually there is a bowl of pretzels or goldfish to snack on between words. It’s one of my favorite parts of the day, really. I read each word and use it in a sentence.
I like to make up silly sentences when I read their words sometimes. Being silly is how we make seemingly boring and mundane tasks more enjoyable in our family. Yesterday it went a little like this.
“Principle. A principle is a rule or idea about something. Principle.”
Without looking up, Jack jotted down the word. I watched as his tongue and lips danced around in his mouth as he penciled each cursive loop. It’s one of my favorite things to see him do. It’s so cute.
“Next word.. principal. The person. If you go to the principal, you will get grounded for three hundred years. So you better not go to the principal.”
Jack looked up at this. Our school calls the principal a headmaster, but he got the idea. He smiled and giggled as he wrote. His tongue danced around again.
Several months ago as I was dictating his Spalding words something funny happened. Jack had a word on his list that spoke out to me. I’ve thought about it often ever since.
“The word is.. writer. When I grow up, I want to be a writer.”
Jack looked up at me.
“Mom,” he said, “but you’re already a…”
Here’s the funny part. I’m already what? A writer, right? That’s what I thought he was going to say, too.
“But you’re already a grown up.”
Ha! I’m already a grown up! Of course I’m a grown up! My heart sank into my stomach a little bit. He doesn’t think I’m a writer.
A doubt-turned-desire was planted in me that day. Am I a writer?
Words can be beautiful and uplifting. They have the ability to encourage and inspire. Words can bring hope and healing. I know for certain words have inspired me. Have they inspired you?
Funny poetry that rhymes has given my youngest a love for reading.
Action and mythology have ignited a hunger for the written word in my oldest son.
Recipes in cook books have sparked my daughter’s love for baking.
The stories of the Bible have given our family real life topics to talk about and put into practice.
Lyrics of songs fill my life daily.
Words come in many forms. And, maybe, more words are still to be written. Could they maybe be written by me??
The desire of my heart is to be a writer. I would love to encourage others through my words. So, I’ve decided, if the words I write encourage just one person, it will be worth my effort. If I could inspire a child or encourage another mom that would be amazing. If God would allow me to touch the lives of others it would be my joy.
I have a story in my mind about a boy with prosthetic legs who is a wonderful friend to others. He struggles with his own identity but discovers he has had what it takes all along. I have so many real life lessons about my own life I could share… Challenges I never thought I’d live past and yet, here I am. And, of course God has already written Ian’s remarkable story for others to hear! I So much material to write about, right?!
So I think I’ll give it a shot. I will pray for God’s guidance and wisdom. I will only write words that will glorify God and encourage others. If I can meet those requirements then I have nothing to lose. In the words of Lin-Manuel, “I am not throwing away my shot.”
I know the word writer is coming up again in two years when my younger son is in this grade. I pray that by then I may confidently say this sentence.
“The word is writer. Mommy is a writer.”