Monday, June 3, 2013

Freedom Isn't Free: Walter's Lesson.

Poor Walter. I feel so bad for him. Summer is supposed to be a big thing when you are a kid. A celebration of freedom. Hanging with your friends, riding bikes, camping out in the back yard, running through the woods, splashing in creeks... The summers of your early teen years are even more so because this is probably the most freedom, innocent freedom, you will ever have in your life.

Walter looked at that freedom, he stood there and admired it laying before him, this beautiful world of frolicking in the sunshine, and he wanted it. he salivated over it. He started walking toward it, ready to revel in it... until 4 words yanked him back into place, snapping the unbreakable chain of parental control around him.

"Missing and Incomplete Work"

Walter's report card came in. D in Science. again. because of his lack of effort. again. He knew the deal, C or above or you are grounded until the next report card. That has been the deal all year, he's spent most of the year grounded to mom Mon-Fri and without a cell phone Mon-Fri until after supper. He knew the conditions, he knew the consequences, he knew his mother and still...

Walter made the decision to not work for what he wanted.

We talked the other day about rewards? About working to earn things? Walter works for his freedom and his cell phone. He has to earn it. He has chores and school work. A D with effort, I could have accepted. A D because he chose not to work comes with consequences. The consequence of not earning your reward.

I've had people tell me maybe when mommy gets a bit older, she won't be quite so strict. It's not the first that it's been insinuated that I'm childish and petty, usually people are a bit more direct but here's the thing... my kid. I don't need approval, I don't share my stories for people to fawn over me or to collect Yes-Men. and yet, the ones who disagree... thank you, but most likely, your opinion won't change my certainty that I am doing the right thing here.

Walter, my sweet boy, I know you read most every post so this is what I want you to remember... Some day, you will be grateful. You will be thankful because you will know that I love you enough to care and you will have no doubts that I believe in you. You, sir, have great potential. You are capable of unimaginable things. You are amazing. I don't want perfection, I want your effort, baby. You will never succeed until you try. Just try, and I guarantee you will amaze yourself with what you can do.

10 comments:

  1. She's right, Walter. Don't sell yourself short, otherwise the world will see you short too.

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  2. Well said Mama, and she is right. You can do it! Someday you will be glad you did! I tell my step son the same things, and when he is here, he is punished the same way for poor grades. And mama, don't let the haters bug ya. He is YOUR kid, and YOU are doing what's right for HIM and YOU. BTW, I treated my step son the same when he was here, and Liam will be treated the same. they will thank us one day <3

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  3. THANK YOU BOTH OF YOU =.= ~WALTER

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  4. Yeah...I hear you. Emma half-assed a big Social Studies packet. I'm in the process of making her redo the entire thing even though it's already been turned in and graded, because she didn't learn the material...and there were many long talks.

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  5. You go mama! Our kids learn by consequences and they won't learn if there aren't consequences - no matter how many "that's not fair"'s they throw at us :D

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  6. I can tell you Walter when the adult world comes it comes with adult consequences. It's wonderful that you have a mom who believes in you so much. She's lucky to have someone to believe in.

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  7. Walter someday you will look back on your Mom and be grateful. She is teaching you a life lesson that many of your friends will never learn. One day when you are an adult, you will look around and see how much better your life is because your momma cared enough to expect your best.

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  8. I am not disagreeing! I applaud your backbone, your kids will reap the rewards. Just, is there summer school in your area? Could he earn freedom for part of the summer by doing the course in summer school? The work still has to be done, he still has consequences, but a chance to salvage some of his summer. The " only one subject" and usually smaller class can help concentration. I found it better for subjects I didn't deal well with during the school year. Just a thought.

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  9. Consequences are necessary. Just as they learn about working for rewards. They need to know what happens when the expectations for rewards are not met. Walter, as long as you try, that is what matters. Your mom is proud of you for you and the fact that you are making an effort. That's all that we really want because an effort shows you care as much about yourself as we care about you!

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  10. Sometimes this is the hardest lesson to give and to receive. Hard because we don't want to have to do it and harder still because we know we have to. Well done.

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