Wednesday, May 18, 2016

My Brainy Lost Boy

I think is the only picture I have of just Zach and me together after his early elementary school years. He used to happily pose for pictures, usually in something of his sister's and just to make her mad.

Then he went through his serious stage.

Then he went through his "All Business" stage.

Then for some unknown (wink wink) reason, quit posing for me to take his picture.

Out of all three of my kids is the most like me, bless his heart. He has an excellent dry wit and quick with the sarcastic comeback. I'm not really sure if those are actual attributes (unless you ask me or him) but also happens to be a whole heck of a lot smarter than I ever will.  He built his first computer when in high school and for several years was the only one we had. He knows more about history than any teacher I ever had and can tell you exactly how the the atom bomb was made.

And also just like me, has sometimes made some really bad decisions. In retrospect, is also like me in the fact that he owns up to his mistakes. He was diagnosed with ADD  his second (duh)  year of kindergarten.

In second grade I had him put on medication. At the time, all were stimulants and  had to go pick up the level two prescriptions from his doctor, they couldn't be called in. He made all straight A's that year.

He also didn't eat a bite of food after having breakfast early at the house before leaving for school and would see him at lunch in the cafeteria (also worked at the school during their elementary years) looking up and seeming to count ceiling tiles while clicking his teeth together. He still bumps his head on the pillow to fall asleep, at the age of almost twenty four.

Tim and I  both agreed would rather have him make C's than to not eat. He was skinny to begin with and didn't suffer from ADHD.

By the time he struggled his way to middle school, they had come out with medicine strictly for ADD and non narcotic which unfortunately also coincided with his rebel years.

And this was his happy look?

When Zach was going into second grade, spoke with his pediatrician about his fascination with video games. She told me kids with ADD often find them stimulating and easy to focus on.

Case in point. Zach used to be terrible about playing with a second player because  was so good at it, could go for an hour or more before losing his turn. A kid a little younger than him came over one day to play and I insisted Zach let him be the second player. The kid didn't know too much about playing Mortal Kombat (most popular game at the time) and Zach seemed all too happy to help him. I remember being in the kitchen cooking  and heard Zach say something like "Now press B-1, now press B-2. Now press it again but faster. Okay... now stand still while I kill you."

So Zach, being in his rebel stage during middle school refused to take the new drug. He firmly stated was his  body and didn't want to put drugs into it.

I also remember telling him would remind him of that if I ever caught him smoking weed in the back yard.

Eventually did and did.

He hit a rough patch his senior year and barely graduated. Then got in trouble for a stupid mistake which cost him thirty days in the county prison. I know it was hard on him but at least owned his mistake. I think it was even harder on me. I cried every day.

He came out an even smarter person and actually wrote letters to some of the guards thanking them.

Since then has been a different person. He works hard and is much easier to be around. He's still moody (just like me) and thinks he's always right (just like me) but now knows how to be a responsible person and hasn't let us down once. I call that a win.

Massey and I came home from work tonight, dog tired. I went straight into the house to pee while she went to the mailbox to check the mail.

Zach has started building another computer and gets packages delivered every other day from UPS. I walked into my kitchen which I left clean as a whistle around noon. The kitchen table was covered with computer parts and instructions. I shook my head, muttered "Oh my god" and went to pee.

I was peeing (with the door open which all my kids hate) and heard Massey come into the house with the mail.

I heard her say "Oh my god" after seeing his computer parts covering the entire table so hollered from the open bathroom door, "I know. Right?"

He was crashed on the sofa in the living room after getting home from work with a now empty Key Lime pie box on his chest. At least he was home.

He rarely ever drinks or goes out. He's a homebody and seems to like being home. His friends like coming to my house to spend time with him and I like it that way.

He's never gone on a rampage with a gun (not that we have any in our home, never have) or felt so lost felt there is no other way out.

He's a kid who was raised by two parents who've constantly kept a vigilant watch over their kids and all too well know what signs to look for.

He's by far been the one to cause me the most worry, guess that comes with being so much like me. It was the same for my parents with me, but I eventually turned out alright around the age of thirty so guess Zach's right on track.

Here's a perfect example of how Zach's mind has always worked.

He was about the age he is in the above photo. It was around Easter and had them both in my van with me going somewhere. We passed a church with three crosses out front each draped in white. Zach asked why there was three of them? I told him, in the back seat over my shoulder that Jesus was hung on the center cross and a robber hung on either side of him.

I still feel bad about not having my kids in church twice a week like my parents did but usually always cleaned house on Sunday mornings with Jesus Christ Superstar booming over the stereo. I guess I home schooled my kids in religion.

Anyway,  decided to use the drive as a Sunday School lesson and said "Zach, did you know they drove nails through both of His hands and feet to hang Him on the cross?"

Zach immediately replied, "I thought they hung Him with a rope."

I'm glad both kids were in the back seat of the van and couldn't see my face. I continued with my lesson. "You know the last thing Jesus said to all those people who hanged Him? He said I forgive you."

Zach thought about that for about five seconds and quite seriously said "I would've said, I will GET you."

I thought about that for about five seconds as well, then said "Well that's why His name was Jesus and your name is Zachary."

That may be my all time favorite "Zachism".

He can and often is moody but just the same can also melt your heart. The older he gets, the better he gets. He's my fine wine of a child. Can make you deliriously happy and can sometimes make you wake up wishing you hadn't.

I've often times felt like also saying to him "Okay, now stand still while I kill you" but am the one responsible for bringing him to this dance we call life, and what a dance it has been!

Till next time...COTTON

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