Saturday, April 23, 2011
It's been 14 years since Zach's had a cap and gown. I leave it hanging on the door outside of the laundry room so I can look at it every time I come downstairs...it inspires me!
He's by far my smartest kid. He also tends to make the stupidest decisions. At least he's not a "Show off."
He was an extremely happy kid until his schooling started and has bucked like a wild bronco ever since.
My kids never went to day care until we moved to Newnan. I worked nights and Tim worked days.
We closed on our house on April Fool's Day fourteen years ago. Tim and I were both now working day shifts so I enrolled Zach in a Pre K program at a day care center. I should have taken the "April Fool's" signing date as an omen. I didn't even think about the fact that the school year was almost over and he couldn't repeat Pre K.
His first day in Pre K happened to be picture day. I introduced him to his teachers as I introduced myself to THEM. They promptly said "Zach, put on this cap and gown and hold this diploma. Big smile..that's great. Now take off the gown and hat and hand it to the kid behind you."
That should have been my hint...it certainly was Zach's. He thought "Dang, this school thing is easy. Heck I just got here and I've already had my graduation picture taken AND gotten a diploma."
The picture below was taken while Zach was serving in the Navy(click on photo). I think they made him an Admiral by the time he could hold a sippy cup. Also notice the cable satellite dish in the background. We were at some friend's house for an Easter egg hunt. For Pete's sake they should have gotten channels from Pluto with that thing!
He started out small and skinny and smiling. He has grown up to be skinny and sulking but sometimes smiling...or maybe it's just a happy smirk.
It was hard for him to go from staying at home with Mom and Dad to attending a school of over 700 kids. That's a pretty big thing to spring on an unassuming five year old and I spent many mornings having to get out of the van, get Massey out of her car seat and physically push Zach into the Kindergarten room while still wearing my pajamas. I would wait until we both stopped crying and then sneak out of the room while the teacher diverted his attention.
I think this may be where all his anger with authority issues come from. We tricked him.
I still have the table that is in the background of this picture. I still have the small framed card behind me on the wall. I got it from a friend when Zach was born and loved it so much I framed it. It is still in Zach's room today.
It's been a long road. It's been a bumpy road. It's had more hills and treacherous turns than I would have liked but there have also been some lovely short streets and avenues I have been down.
With teens it's never easy. If it IS easy... you are either an anomaly or not paying close enough attention.
He has less than 20 days left in high school. He has hated school since they took that fatal picture of him in Pre K. It was his first day. They stuck a diploma in his hand and snapped a photo. They set the tone for Zach that day.
Can you sue a pre school for false advertisement?
With fingers crossed and prayers going up on an hourly basis, I may see Zach in a cap and gown once again.
At least this time it will mean something!
I still stand by what Tim said about Zach when he was in ninth grade.
"Let's just get him out of high school and he'll end up being the next Bill Gates."
Here's to wishes, dreams and prayers coming true! (Or as Zach used to say "My prayers came right!")
Til next time...COTTON