Over the past few months, both of my children have been saying the darnedest things. Precious has exploded with words ever since her tonsil surgery while My Main Man has taken it upon himself to become bossy. With all that being said, it has been fun watching and listening to them play and fight the way siblings often do.
A few months ago I wrote this post but never hit the publish button. With that being said, it’s interesting looking back at the post realizing my thought haven’t changed. It shows my consistency.
Weekend at Grandma and Grandpa’s
I had the kids for the weekend. It was amazing. Not everything went to plan but that’s what made it great.
Throughout my playing career, I rarely was hurt. In high school I was fortunate to strain a muscle on an off week. I had the flu for two games during the state tournament. But I rebounded by splitting my chin open on the floor for the state finals.
During college I had nagging back issues. Playing through the injury disrupted my chi. The injury spread its destructive energy into my right leg, through my hamstring, down to the knee, and finally settling into a career ending tendonitis of the achilles.
For the past few weeks we (the boss and I) have been considering moving. We like our home, love our neighbors and enjoy our community. With that being said, we are looking to use our living space as best we can.
Our property backs up to conservation land and the “mature” forest look from our deck is beautiful all year long. There are no neighbors behind us, due to conservation laws, but that also limits expansion and construction ideas. Land within 35 feet of the conservation must remain undisturbed. For us that means we can’t go backwards. …
For the past couple of weeks I’ve been crushed at work. As a teacher, September, October, and November (every month now that I think about it) are pretty rough. The whole family has to get used to having parents who aren’t around all the time. Both the boss and I are teachers so we spend most summer days with My Precious and My Main Man.
I am a Teacher Because
I am a teacher because my mother was a teacher. She doesn’t talk much about being a teacher other than to say she was given the worst of the worst students. People had given up on her students but my mother decided she was going to make them learn. When I have tough days (we all have tough days in our profession), my mother tells the story to me. She tells me about the kids she had that couldn’t read, write, or do math. But the headmaster of the school gave the new teacher (my mother) the most challenging students anyways. She sent them home with the assignment to collect 100 of something. She taught them how to add, subtract and multiply. Hearing that story on tough days reminds me anyone can make a difference, not matter how inconsequential you think your actions are. I am a teacher because my mother believed in everyone. …
My first real interaction with Chris came a few weeks into our freshmen year of high school. We were in a pickup game during after school intramurals and I had the ball at the three point line. Chris was guarding me. I was very aware of who he was – this was the 13-year-old who could already dunk! As any proud former 8th grade all-star would do, I decided to see what he was all about. I made a move and drove right by him! …
I tell lots of stories. One of the stories I don’t think I’ve ever told stretches back to the last birthday party I had in 3rd grade.
Having a birthday in December meant I had just changed schools that previous fall. Beginning the school year at a catholic school in a neighboring town, I didn’t think to invite many kids from my previous town (and school). However, I did invite my best friend, Ari. He was known to have a good time and get a little out of control like myself. He always managed to keep it together just a little bit more than myself, so he made for a good governor.
3rd Grade Birthday Party
At my 3rd grade birthday party, I asked my dad to have it at an ice rink. Ari, was the only friend I invited from my old school. Everyone else was from the new school I was attending.
After a few laps of skating the rink, I found I wasn’t having much fun. Something inside was telling me that the party wasn’t exactly what I wanted. The skating rink seemed something like my new friends from the parochial school would be interested in. My old friends wouldn’t know what to make of it. Internally, I felt I wasn’t really into it.
It didn’t matter, I convinced myself to keep up the facade. No matter what, I had to make believe I was having a good time. Otherwise my father wouldn’t let me hear the end of it.
Within a few minutes my best friend Ari came up to me and said, “This isn’t fun!” I knew he was right. But I wanted to impress my new friends. I kept on skating around the rink and hoped Ari would act more like them. I pretended I had a headache. Ari did silly things to get me to laugh.
Hindsight is 20/20
As much as I wanted to laugh and have a good time with him, I didn’t bother. By the end of the day, I just hung out by myself. My new friends from the parochial school loved Ari and I was miserable. The party hadn’t turned out how I wanted it to. Ari was the star of the show. People wanted to hang out with him. I was supposed to be the big deal but no one seemed to notice.
As I look back on the situation with 20/20 vision I realize now I shouldn’t have compromised who I was. At the time I knew it too. I didn’t trust myself enough to be happy being myself (who I was inside). I thought assimilating to the new culture was more import. Since then, every day I kicked myself for leaving Ari left out in the wind trying to make me laugh by have a good time.
Now, I am an adult and I hope my children don’t make the same mistake I made as a child. I pray they will be themselves no matter who is in front of them. I hope and pray they will unapologetically be themselves. As dad, I’ll clean up the pieces proudly so my children grow to be themselves.
A few weeks ago the whole family went on vacation to St. Augustine. While my main man and I were playing in the pool, he brought something up from the night before. You see, he had been up all night because the Big Bad Wolf was chasing him. But when we were racing in the pool, he said, “Swim fast. The Big Bad Wolf is going to catch us.”
A few weeks ago my main man turned four years old. With him growing up so fast, it has become more and more difficult to remember all accomplished in a year. Creating this video of events helps everyone relive his past year. Don’t be surprised to see he’s interested in many of the same things as last year. There will be a few new interests too (mainly in the music). …