Thursday, March 22, 2012

Roller Coaster!

I should start a new blog all on the perils of raising a teenage boy. I know, those with teenage girls will jump up and down trying to "one-up" me with their stories but I'm willing to resort to kicking them in the shins if they try to stop my rant!! I am deeply enamored of my 14 year old son. He is handsome, sweet, funny, talented, smart, and many more adjectives (I cannot recall them now as I am on the death-thrill portion of the roller coaster ride which is our relationship) He is, also, stubborn, lazy, flippant, mouthy, sarcastic (gee, not sure where he gets that from???), frustrating, frustratED, and stinky (had to add the last one in there because, gravy, what happens to boys at this age?)

I grew up in a home where there were 2 boys and 3 of us girls. My parents, at least in dealing with my twin sister and me, had a pretty clear-cut expectation from us. When it comes to school, we were to get comfy, have a snack, and then do our homework. Everything else was secondary - unless the house was on fire or we were on fire! In talking to my parents now, it seems that their battles with my brothers were much more, um, active. I can only remember my own struggles - perhaps I blocked out the drama that ensued with my siblings at homework time?? They never threatened me if I were to obtain a bad grade in school but something compelled me to study, do my homework, and ask for help when I was lost. I am, by far, not one of those people that is naturally smart - I had to work for every grade that I received. It wasn't until college that I determined that I could write my way out of or in to any grade that I wanted but do NOT make me guess on math or science tests because I would fail. So...I studied!

Is this a trait reserved for the female gender? Are we, generally, more self-motivating? Are we less prone to living life on automatic pilot? Are we less apt to be surprised if we missed a week of school and find out that we missed tests and that we have homework to make up for those days? Are we more concerned and, consequently, proactive, when a teacher doesn't come to US with said assignments with a gentle reminder that we need to get on the ball? Well, I'm on the verge of setting up some sort of scientific trial to prove or disprove the theory that girls are much better self-motivators than boys! Am I the only one surprised or ignorant of this information?

A typical scenario at my house on a weekday after school:
Briege - at the table at 3:05 (unless she has drama club or choir or newspaper) eating her snack AND doing her homework. This, most often, lasts until roughly 5:15.
Keagan - rolling his eyes at 3:05 because he has to do ALL of his 1st grade homework. His homework session usually lasts until about 3:45 (with 10 minutes built in by his chattiness)
Murphy - on the couch catching up on the myriad of texts that he had received throughout the day (what?) and then rolling his eyes at 3:25 when I ask if he has any homework. More eye rolling when I don't seem to believe him when he says, "No" or "I did it at school" Then ensues the lecture about study-habits and that life is not about only doing what is expected but it sometimes requires going above and beyond the minimum. More eye rolling... see the pattern?

Have I mentioned that I love my son?????????

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