"Son, why didn't you turn in this paper on the Egyptian Crisis?" I was checking the Pinnacle Grade Viewer a few weeks ago and was upset that he was starting his class with a low grade.
"I did turn it in, Mom!" He sounded convincing, but I didn't buy it.
"Obviously you didn't. There is a zero in place of a grade." He pulled the paper out of his backpack and handed it to me. After seeing the plainly marked "0" at the top, I quickly read through it. "This paper is about Israel!" I then read the teacher's note at the bottom stating the obvious problem: my son had written a paper about the wrong Mideast situation. Of course he received a zero.
"You do know that Egypt and Israel are two different countries, don't you?" I asked. I was a little afraid to hear his answer.
"Well, I know now," he responded a bit indignantly.
The boy is brilliant when he puts his mind to it. In math, he learns effortlessly. In fact, he has done so well on the FCAT the last 3 years in the mathematics category that he received an invitation by Duke University to take the SAT.
On the other hand, when he does dishes, he can't seem to put them away in an orderly fashion.
Now, I don't expect him to become a freakish Martha Stewart minion because I'm certainly not, but I know for a fact this kid had some type of shape sorter toy as a baby and, looking at the silverware drawer after he's put it away, you'd think he can't tell the difference between a rounded spoon and a square-tipped fork or calculate the physical problem with stacking a larger object on top of a smaller one.
Reading is another area which he doesn't want to devote much of his time. This breaks my heart because I love to read. I just can't seem to spur that interest with him. He prefers to skim read which is why he didn't score as well in that category on the FCAT. He can do it, but he doesn't want to do it.
He is me made over. I look back at myself at his age and cringe at what is to come. He is lazy with school work unless it comes easy and puts it off if he doesn't like it, but at least he's more social than I was. I tended to be a bit of a loner until I hit high school. I also wasn't so athletic.
Speaking of athletic, this kid is beyond fit. He practices daily for basketball whether it is at the school gym or out in the neighborhood.
Last week, he did something that exceeded my expectations of his physical abilities. At age 13, he ran the Mason K. Smoak 5K race with his Grandy. When he found out about the race, we bought him shoes and he ran daily. He said he was going to run to win.
He finished in 31 minutes, 2 minutes ahead of his Grandy who finished 1st in her age group. We are so proud of them both. He brought home a medal and a souvenir shirt. He acts like it is no big deal.
I look forward to seeing how this boy will amaze me over the years. He's quirky and unique and astounding. He's my star peg and he'll never fit in a round hole. That's just how he's made.