Over this past weekend I saw some pretty good signs telling me to change my way of thinking…or more importantly to let go of stuff that has been bothering me…namely the boy’s attitude.
Leading into the final exams of his Freshman year of high school, the boy chose not to study-but rather rely on his belief that he was a good test taker and hope for the best. As you might imagine, he didn’t do as well as he thought-not only that, but he was nonplussed about the whole thing “I don’t understand what you’re so upset about, I’m still getting promoted to 10th grade…” He tried to argue. Meanwhile his father and I showed much restraint; allowing him to continue breathing. While talking with others, over the course of the weekend I kept reiterating how angry I was at his apparent lack of care and my concern/worry he had blown his “grades based” scholarship to the school. “Where am I supposed to come up with that extra money? I saved all the money from one job to afford to send you-with the help of that scholarship money…now what are we supposed to do?” I yelled at him-hoping and praying he would take responsibility for his inaction; apologize and agree to double his efforts in the fall.
Yet even after he did all the above…I was still very upset with him.
Friday evening, early into my shift working in the beer tent during our church festival, a woman approached me with whom I recognized as another parent, but did not know personally. “Hi, I don’t know your name…” she began and I pointed to my name tag-as if offering assistance; “…but I wanted to tell you something you already know…what a good kid your son is.” She said. “Oh…” I replied, taken aback. “Yes he was my son’s “Biggie” last year when your son was in 8th grade and my son was in fourth. My son Ross, who by the way, is very much like your boy-sensitive and smart-absolutely loves him. He really did a great job of making my son feel good about who he is”. Floored, I replied. “Oh well thank you…yes he is a good kid…” “I just saw him and asked if I could give him a hug-embarrassing him a bit. But he allowed the hug and I thanked him again for looking out for my boy. He even offered some advice about being wary of bullies as sixth grade was his worst year with them”. She informed. Smiling at the reminder she offered, I thanked her again for telling me this-something the boy would never ever divulge to me and then I sighed heavily. “Alright God-I hear ya…” I said to myself…trying desperately to let go of my animosity toward the boy.
You see, the bottom line is still the same. He made a boneheaded move-not studying for his final exams; yet that hasn’t changed the basic tenant of who my son is: A good kid who cares how others are treated and wants whats best for them as well as himself-though he would prefer not having to work for that all the time. He can be a real character and a pain in the rear…but he’s mine…and I wouldn’t have him any other way.