Our four-year-old son, leader of the vandals, Sam has been referring to himself in the third person.
Furthermore, he calls himself “Sammy.”
Y’all, no one calls him Sammy but himself.
“Sammy wants to go outside.”
“Sammy doesn’t like dat kind of cheese.”
“Sammy wants to get naked and eat cake.”
I find this odd. And I have been parenting for a while. I am not sure that it will continue to be funny or cute. And what if this is who he is?
What if he will grow up and be a vacuum cleaner salesman that gets too close to you when he talks, and has cliché and quirky sayings and winks and shoots pistol fingers at ya?
“Sammy has the vavaroom to clean your rararoom.” Wink wink bang.
I don’t know how to harness the weirdness. I don’t want to stifle him? That might only make him weirder. And now it is funny and cute. Maybe I am on high alert. Back when we had the original batch of kids, I was oblivious to the oddities that they would embrace in the semi-adulthood. But now I wonder if the mini-mes wouldn’t be less weird if I had done things differently.
Truly I struggle with that which is just a natural occurrence, and only God is to blame, or it was all me.
I am prepared for it to be my fault. I really am. I am probably the worst. But with the new batch, there are things I see in them that I don’t think I can be responsible for.
Still, I am too old to change. So, I am starting over. I have begun searching for pre-school, home school curriculum. Yeah, I didn’t keep mine. And I tried to talk myself into sending them to school. But, again, I am old, I can’t start over the other way either.
And we have tried it all… but we always land back on homeschool. Why? Well, if I am completely honest it’s because 1. The flexibility can’t be beaten. 2. My kids are weird.
I remember when it came unraveled. We built a house in a good school district and sent Maggie to school. She was happy and confident.
All was well. Then, it was time for John to go. But John barely spoke. For the first three years of his life, we believed he was deaf, at a minimum severely hearing impaired. As he came more and more out from under that diagnosis… I still knew. He wasn’t going to fit into the “normal” paradigms of traditional school. His first assessment proved me right.
“Mrs. Amerine if you’d consider medicating him he’d probably be a successful student and an exceptional athlete.”
I am not against medication. I like medication. But medicating John would be like putting a dead cat to sleep. He was the calmest, most attentive, and “hard” listening kid ever. He wanted to learn, he wanted to keep up… I withdrew Maggie, and we were one of those families. And, good grief… back then, there weren’t as many of us. Now, we are a dime a dozen.
And we tried other stuff. John needed more than I could offer him at one point.
But, in the end, he always ended up back home. Luke, well he’s a whole different story. He needed much more help… like a Marine screaming at him to drop and give him 50. Still, he graduated from home.
And I know what works, and more than what works, I know what doesn’t work.
The bottom line is … here I go again. 44 years old, with a preschooler. I am most hopeful that I live to graduate him. I prayerfully consider this as I am planning out his school year. I have no idea what to expect, I know the curriculum. I know the drill. But I haven’t schooled Sam or Sammy as he refers to himself.
I am unsure of who this little character will become. I will add the whimsical touches. I will continue to screw up. I am still a yeller. I still am a worrier. But on this side of the journey, I also know that the human beings I have raised are 100% human. I guess homeschooling gave them a leg up or helped them in some ways. In other ways, I am not too sure it would have mattered.
They still grew into humans. Opinionated, self-willed, strong and independent humans. I can add or take away a portion. They will still all need Jesus and counseling. And I can tell them about Jesus and Google counselors, but still they will need to fall in love with Jesus and pick their own counselor. I can’t do everything for them.
So “Sammy’s” first day of pre-k will be at our kitchen table, on our ranch, in the grand tradition of me pouring myself into these lunatics I call my babies.
I don’t know what to expect. I don’t know how it will end. I can’t believe I will be responsible for this child’s education.
And no, a Master’s in Education doesn’t sweeten the pot. And I am terrified and excited. Maybe this time around it will be less stressful and with fewer tears, a joyous and fruitful journey where no one cries or doubts their decision; fully embracing the journey with total faith in the choice.
Jami doubts it.
May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained. Love, Jami
Proverbs 9:10 (NASB) “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”