About Me

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Blue Ridge Area of Virginia
Alicha McHugh is author of "Daughter of the Promise" first in her: Numbered Among the Stars series (available on Amazon.com). She is a homemaker to her husband of 15 years, homeschooler to their children. Writing, enjoying tea and creaming Raw Honey are three of her current pursuits. Grabbing time to read is always high on her list of priorities! If you'd like to contact her, she'd love to hear from you! Just email: alichamchugh@gmail.com

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"An Acceptable" Loss

For the "developmentally delayed child's mother" and anyone else who cares to peek in ;)

At 4 years old, I told my mother I hated school. Mistake number one was saying it in the first place. Mistake number two, saying it in front of her in-laws. Back then I thought I hated school because I was stupid, and honestly I was okay with that. My older brother was touted a "genius"...so I naturally thought intelligence overrated.

In third grade I did something forbidden under any circumstance, even for me. I failed spelling. My family's response? Quality time and parental involvement it was not! No TV, no playing outside, no games, no...nothing for a whole grading period, back then a grading period was 9 weeks. I could eat, sleep and study spelling.

As you might have gathered, I wasn't exactly the perfect student. I once had a teacher pull me aside and tell me I probably cost her her job that day. To this day I'm probably too cavalier about our little chat. I was a bad student...and she was a bad teacher...I hope she got out of it and into something a little less challenging. Back to me, harsh and extreme seemed this 9 week imprisonment for a child who lived to play outside with mud, sticks and leaves...and my one childhood friend, Sandi. 

I cried everyday.

But something magical happened during that time. I stumbled upon books. I discovered life beyond the walls of my room in words written by people I've never met and who had no connection with my life. A girl who HATED reading with a passion, began in those miserable 9 weeks to love reading with a passion. And the "wastelands became wilderness" as I began to wander outside my small world and to see beyond the "what is" to the "what could be".

Did I become an "A" student and shock everyone with my brilliance...no. When we left New Jersey for south of the Mason-Dixon line, I was still a mediocer student, mostly alone and detached from school in general...though always with a book in hand. I didn't gain an interest in school until we moved from one school to another mid-year and I had an epiphany through a certain science class in 8th grade. I got a "C", my usual, in science. Where we moved to, the class was a unit behind. I KNEW the material. It was quite the shock for me to discover...if you study and memorize the material...you get better grades. Wow, right?

Remember though...I'd grown up watching my brother, the straight "A" student, never open a book! He has a photographic memory, I was not so blessed...or maybe I was. He still hates to read :) though, like any smart person, he makes himself do it.

I have to smile when I remember my elementary school teachers. Most of whom gave up and just endured a year with me, especially the first 5 years. (My 6th grade teacher, Miss. Russ was a huge exception to this, one day I hope to tell about her.) You see, I doubt I'd be consider a proper teacher type (heck, I don't consider myself the "teacher type") and yet I taught my daughter to read by the age of 4. She is now 5 years old reading at at 4th/5th great :) level.

How did this happen? I first attribute this to the Lord as I trusted him to take what I put before her and have fruit come from it. HE DID! {Secondly these next two things helped in a HUGE way: Starfall.com and Leapfrog Videos from Target and then a packet of sight cards.}

Now, I must say my spelling is still so laughable I don't allow myself to play scrabble with the in-laws who frequently get 8 letter words! But when I remember I was considered an "acceptable loss" (spending most summers in summer school) I stand in awe at what God used to change and mold me from an ignorant, silly girl to at least someone who wants to know, to learn, to discover. I'm living proof, GOD does use the simple to confound the wise! :)

Psalm 107 is my favorite all time chapter in Psalms. It talks about God LOVING to turn things around where everyone gives up hope and labels things as though they always will be what they are and no more than that. GOD is AMAZING!

I hope this encouraged your heart...it encouraged me to write it! :) Have a great day!