I received the dreaded schedule-a-teacher-conference-because-of-your-son’s-behavior note on Monday.
Truthfully, I was expecting it. The kiddo is impulsive. He has the attention span of a gnat. He cannot, for the love of all that is holy, sit still for longer than five seconds. Some days I just lean my forehead against the cool wall, close my eyes, and wonder how I spawned this child.
However, just like any mother, I felt myself get defensive and I spent a sleepless night plotting the teacher take-down. (Sorry teachers…)
I met with her on Tuesday after clinic. I had to do it ASAP so I could stop stewing….
Once the shame and humiliation and anger wore off and I was able to hear what she was saying, she reinforced what I already know:
He is insanely smart.
He is weird.
But he is not mean.
Let me preface this by saying that I was weird growing up. I was bullied mercilessly and my greatest fear is having him end up bullied and made fun of like I was. As the quiet and shy kind of weird, I was a perfect target for torture. He is at least social and silly and funny and outgoing in a way that I never could have been back then.
So. I struggle with this desire for him to be perfect in every way. I do so want perfection. Particularly as a physician. I feel the entire community’s eyes on my child as a judgement of me.
But. What fun would that perfection be, really? Despite the frustrations, he makes me laugh! It is party all of the time with this boy, not to mention the fact that I adore it when he jumps me from behind and tries to Ninja wrestle me to the ground so he can whisper in my ear, “Mommy, I love you soooooo much!”
He will never be anyone other than this kid I have now. I have to teach him, somehow, to slow down and analyze his impulses before he gets himself into trouble. The teacher has to figure out how to keep him challenged and engaged so his boredom does not drive everyone else crazy.
In the meantime, I have my little circle of bare wall mapped out for my forehead.