I’m exhausted from this working nonsense. I worked a whole day today, plus karate! Luckily there were no drum lessons this week. LOL! Before bed I wanted to write a quick post about some growing-up observations I had with Lex this afternoon.
In the car on the way to karate I asked if he had any homework today. He said, “Well, kind of.” Apparently his ELA teacher gave them an assignment, due Monday, to write three things they want to accomplish this year. “Basically goals, without calling them goals,” he tells me. Goal setting is one of his least favorite things. Right up there with vaccinations and trying new foods. All have left him on the floor, under chairs, in tears. As I mentally prepared myself for a weekend of goal setting with Lex, he said, “I’m just going to write three down and then forget them.” Um… ok. Not really the intended goal, but certainly a suggestion I’ve made in the past in an effort to get him off the floor. He then went on to tell me the goals he decided to set! The first one is to get all of his grades up to an A, the second one he couldn’t remember, and the third was to keep his assigned 40-book challenge sheet up to date. All good goals, I assume. Then he tells me that he had a B+ in science, but when he checked it today his teacher had a put in a few more grades and he was up to an A again. Check that goal off the list! He also told me that he’s sure he’s read at least 40 books already (they are allowed to count books they read over the summer, so yeah, he’s read at least 40!), so he’s going to just write down a bunch of books he knows he’s read and be done with the challenge. LOL! Check that goal off the list! Now he just needs to remember what Goal #2 was.
I realize this is not the intent of goal setting, and I will also confess that I am TERRIBLE at goal setting, but I did notice several points of growth in this conversation, and I shared them with him. First, he didn’t cry over this assignment! It didn’t even stop him in his tracks. Instead of getting hung up on whether or not he could do the goals, he just wrote something down. He’s a very honest person and in the past the idea of committing to something he didn’t know if he could accomplish really got him stuck. Today he was able to write them down and move on! Second, I remember (not so fondly) the days of elementary school when he was assigned to read for 20 minutes a day. After reading for hours he would then fall apart because he didn’t “do his homework” because he didn’t time himself reading for exactly 20 minutes. When I tried to tell him that he just read for an hour, he struggled to fill out the stupid form with a start and stop time because it wasn’t, in his mind, an “official” reading for 20 minutes. Today he has the flexibility to say, “yeah, I read those books in the past, that counts!” and move on! Awesome!! Again, maybe not entirely the intent of the assignment, but boy these are big milestones for him!
The icing on the cake came at karate today. As he’s walking into the dojo he notices that most of the other kids have these red sparring gloves on. He turns to me and says, “Oh, I forgot, we are going to start doing sparring on Wednesday and I think I need gloves today.” Umm… ok?! But guess what, he went in anyway, without the gloves and all was fine. They offer sparring classes on Friday and Lex hasn’t had any interest at all, though he told me later tonight that he’s kind of interested in sparring, but just doesn’t want to go to karate on Fridays. :) So anyway, I was watching the class today and they are wearing these big gloves and mouth guards and I’m thinking this might be the end of karate for Lex. After class I asked him if he wanted to stop at the office and see about buying the gear. He said yes!! YES! He wants to wear those gloves AND is willing to wear a mouth guard. A MOUTH GUARD!? Can you believe it? (He hasn’t actually put it in yet, so we’ll see how that goes.) He’s even willing to wear the rest of the sparring gear when the class gets to that point.
Of course that means we have to buy all that extra gear, but hey, if he’s willing (and excited!) to wear it, I’ll buy it!
It’s amazing to think back to how stuck he used to get over seemingly the smallest things and how far he has come. It really gives me faith in his future! He is a pretty amazing guy!