Last night, in the span of one hour, we learned that he did not do so great on his first math quiz and that he had gotten half off on an assignment because he left it in his locker. The final straw was finding a marked-up, crumbled piece of paper at the bottom of his already rancid backpack. He had not completed an assignment according to the specific instructions and therefore got a D.
“I just forgot,” was the WRONG thing to say in explanation. Chris and I both just let him have it. We used words like “unacceptable,” “too smart,” “don’t even try,” and “punished for a month.” It was an ugly scene at that kitchen table last night.
In the end, we certainly did not feel like we taught him anything, he ran up to his room barely holding back tears, and Chris and I found ourselves arguing about how we should have and could have handled the whole thing better.
This morning I woke up feeling icky to say the least. When Sam came down, hair carefully styled in a tousled mess, I gave him a huge hug and a plate of warm chocolate chip pancakes.
He looked dumbfounded. Normally, they are lucky if I remember to hand them a beverage with their cold cereal.
He sat quietly pushing the pancakes around his plate. I packed his perfect lunch, offered him hot chocolate to go and put his favorite sweatshirt in the dryer just to freshen it up.
No smile. No thanks. No nothing. Just a mess of mangled pancakes laying uneaten on a plate.
Finally I couldn’t take it anymore.
“Sam,” I blubbered. “Dad and I just know that you are so smart. You are a great writer and really good at math when you put the time in. You are adorable and hilarious and…and…and..well, I guess I’m trying to apologize for coming down so hard on you last night. Today, I am going to buy you a new binder that will help you organize stuff. Maybe we can get you a new desk and a better lamp and….what about a math tutor???”
When I stopped to breathe, he was just staring at me. I knew I looked horrible. I tried to wipe the smeared mascara with a paper towel but that only made the black streaks worse. My hair was barely contained in it’s overnight pony tail. And September is probably a little early for my giant sweats and fuzzy slippers.
“Honey, I know you are really upset, but please eat a little pancake for me,” I pleaded.
Finally, he spoke.
“Mom…did you use a different mix? These pancakes are disgusting!”
And, just like that all is well in the Meyer house.
How do you kiss and make-up?