On Feb 14th, 2008, I brought ZuZu to Elementary school for the first time. I remember that I went to pick her up after a few hours (the plan was to ease her into it) and she basically told me "no" she wanted to stay. So I said "goodbye.” According to my blog, I got in trouble for saying that goodbye, she was there for 1 day and I was already embarrassing her. ;) As I walked out the building, with tears flowing, I couldn't believe how brave and strong she was. To be in a classroom, where she couldn't understand 99% of what was being said, takes an amazing amount of courage and strength. Here we are, 9 years, 3 months and 20 days later, and she has graduated High School. She has worked so hard the last 9+ years, she had a lot of catching up to do, a lot of language to learn, all while trying to learn the new things being taught year after year. Every year she continued to learn more and more and the gap kept closing. I don't know that I can find the words to explain how proud of her I am. You see, learning a second language is hard, it can be really hard, but it is even harder, when you don't have someone at home that speaks your native language, and ZuZu didn't. But we always found ways to communicate and she always found ways to learn. Lots of hard work and long hours at the kitchen table and it has paid off. She is graduating with a 3.69 GPA and after taking a GAP year, she is looking forward to attending a Division 1 college for Criminal Justice and shooting on their Rifle Team. ZuZu, we are so proud of you and can’t wait to see where the next chapter in your journey takes you. We love you to the moon and back.
If you are looking for a great charity
Check out www.bringmehope.org. ZuZu went to camp via this program in August 2006. She had an amazing time and we think it is such a great program. You can check out our post from April 7, 2008 to see a slide show of the few pictures we have.