Today's excuse: The Mom Thing
I had to wake early to ride to work with MathMan and attend Nate's Freshman Orientation. He's going to go to MathMan High School for reasons practical and otherwise. I went to show that I'm making at least the minimum effort of engaging in his education. A couple of months from now, I'll point back at this morning and shout "I do too care! Why else did I go to that meeting?"
And he'll say "The Orientation in August?"
And I'll say, "Was that it? Yes. See? I care!"
The reality is that MathMan will be more closely tied to Nate during the next four years. We've kind of planned it that way. It's not that I don't care, but we've reached the point where what these kids are learning, at least in the math and science subject areas, are way beyond my limited abilities. I'll be here to offer moral support, pack nutritious lunches and to remind Nate not to backseat his dad too much on during those hour long commutes.
The program reminded me why I'm glad Nate is attending such a diverse school. The school -grades nine through twelve - is public and serves a mixture of middle, working and struggling classes, black, white and Latino populations. The staff is reflects the student population.
That school belongs to everyone.
While the administrators and staff demonstrated pride and excitement about the high-achieving students, there was a real effort to encourage all parents to help their students achieve. "Whether you see your student going to college or trade school or something different, it's never too soon to start them thinking about how the decisions they make now will affect their future."
It's pretty simple advice, but oh so important. It's probably not so very different from the messages being repeated in every school offering orientation in the coming weeks. It was good to hear even though this is our second time around the high school thing.
I tried to remember the messages given when Chloe was a high school freshman. Five years can wipe out a lot of memory, I guess, because, while I'm sure the messages were similar, they didn't stay with me. Part of that might be due to the expectations a parent has for his or her children. We had high expectations for Chloe, but her personal expectations were even higher. With Nate and Sophia we've been more relaxed and it shows. They aren't bad students, but they don't freak out about the occasional B or C either.
Being who I am, I had to poke fun at the extensive clothing restrictions schools now have. I understand that as a society we've really let our standards slip, but some of this is just too silly, too let's take ourselves a little too seriously.
"I certainly hope they don't include boobs in this 'no sagging' rule," I stage whispered to MathMan. "Hey! Maybe I could get some of those zip ties for my knockers, cinch them back up into place. It's cheaper than surgery."
You just never know what's going to make MathMan's face go all ashen.
On the way home, Nate and I discussed the morning's programs and expectations. I asked him what he expected from himself.
"My goal is to graduate with G.P.A. higher than Chloe's," he replied.
Behold the awesome power of Sibling Rivalry. The bonus is that once he's said this, he can't go back. She'll make his life a misery.
How about you? Did you/do you set high expectations for yourself? Do you need to use Nate's orientation for an excuse for not getting something done? Do you need a nap? Or maybe some zip ties?
|His future's so bright.......|