I Thought a Summer’s Worth of Practice Would Be Helpful.

I made the mistake of mentioning “school” to Dylan. It doesn’t start for two more weeks.

Since 10th grade finished, Dylan has been on a quest to show me how responsible he is. He’s been great with letting me know when he’s ready for work – and being ready on time. He’s planned ahead with friends and asked in advance when he wanted to spend time with them. And he’s done his work around the house, mostly without being reminded.

And we’ve rewarded him by letting him do nearly everything he wants to do, whenever he wants to do it. He’s even learning to drive.

But also on his list of responsibilities were two things: summer homework and SAT practice. Those things have somehow slipped his mind.

So this week, it rained a lot and we didn’t have much to do. So I told him to finish his summer homework, and to do some SAT practice. You’d have thought I was asking him to pull out his toenails with a tweezer.

Eventually, though, after repeated arguments about how I only care about his future and not his present, Dylan finally buckled down and did the work.

Somehow I thought this responsibility thing would translate to the school year. I thought a summer’s worth of practice would be helpful.

But it’s not going to translate. I thought he’d wake up earlier in the mornings, make himself a healthy breakfast, remember his vitamins and coffee, and head out the door with a grin because he’s finally making all A’s and maybe one B.

But that’s not going to happen. He absolutely detests going to school. It doesn’t matter how much it means for his future to do well this year.

The only thing that matters to Dylan is how he feels right now. It is the classic characteristic of immaturity and irresponsibility.

I’ll be surprised if Dylan actually gets all the way through 11th grade. And it hasn’t even started yet.

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