Sunday, January 31, 2010

A Beacon of Something

In addition to trying to knock out my latest article and finish putting my presentation for Thursday, I find myself sorting through a variety of dilemmas and teachable moments.

Dilemmas first. Much to my chagrin, the boys languish in the Learn to Swim rung of the township lessons because neither of them will swim on their backs.

It was frustrating to watch the Level 3 swimmers kickboarding up and down the deep end, knowing BOTH my sons were doing just that at their pool before Christmas, when instead they are stuck on the platform waiting to take their turn swimming out, with a floatie attached and a teacher.

The teacher was smiling, but dismissive, when I told her this.

Lest you think I am taking this lying down, I AM working on a plan B. But dealing with the soft bigotry of low expectations is what I do daily. I get tired of it, but at least I can name it and deal with it.

Anyway, we head to the library, and I am pleased to watch Nic join a pair of brothers at the computers. He logs on, talking to both brothers about Poptropica. One of the brothers logs on, and Nic leaves his game from time to time to help coach one, then the other, brother as they discover this new game.

We stayed at the library much longer than I planned to, just because this interaction was just too cool and too NORMAL to interrupt.

From there we joined dad, who was setting up Nic's Pack's Pinewood Derby. We all helped set up chairs, and I ended up working the concession stand for pretty much the whole time. After trying to redirect Nic (unsuccessfully), I eventually invited him back to help me work.

He enjoyed making change. He also enjoyed talking to the rest of the women working the stand. And I found myself talking to a mom I hadn't seen since Nic was in K. Once upon a time, Nic was *that kid* to her--now, she remarked on how mature he was, how far he's come, and that she's dealing with her own *that kid* issues.

What's interesting, I'm finding, is that I am very much a go-to person in our school district. People know me and Nic, and as a consequence, I find myself increasingly sought out, and I'm not sure about the why. Maybe it's just enough that Nic is doing as well as he is.

But he's not doing it in a vacuum.

And the other plus is that we didn't have to worry about G eloping. He is excited about racing his own car next year.

The kids are growing up. It's amazing to watch.

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