I wish I could say that life around here is moving exactly as planned. But, I can't, cuz it's not. Brayden has put a little wrench in things.
Now please don't mistake that I'm "throwing him under the bus" - but things have come to quite a head with him as he has a major speech due on Thursday, and we're realizing just how completely unorganized, lacking in focus, and oblivious he is right now. Because our focus has been more on family/Christmas things, I have not been giving the attention needed to his daily homework, and now we're behind the eight ball.
There was lots of "discussion" last night and lots of tears. As much as Brayden is making us "lose it", we are so thankful that he does recognize the problem and takes responsibility for it - and feels incredibly remorseful. Nothing kills Brayden more than knowing we are disappointed in him. So, with that said, one would imagine today would have been "ideal" in Brayden coming home with all of his homework to do - everything turned in from before, and a clean desktop left as well. Nope, nope, and nope. THREE times someone had to return to the school (he went home with his buddy Tanner, who left a very expensive prop for his speech there (to the exasperation of Nancy) - so they returned first). Then, Nancy told me he left things there (after I had specifically talked to him via cellphone while he was headed back to the school to doublecheck nothing got left). So, full of fury, I drove by to get missing homework (and witnessed a messy desktop and other things left behind). And, then, once Brayden and I were reunited and working on homework, we discover two more things were left there. I can't even communicate the depth of frustration this causes, but it is absolutely necessary we get caught up here at home because the "stay in during recess under the watchful eye of the teacher" is really not cutting it. (He just doesn't get it done, and then things pile up even more).
Brayden is grounded from tv and games indefinitely at this point. He was crying because he felt so stupid about all of it earlier - and I do truly believe he is more disappointed in his own failures than he is in any consequences. Mostly, he's worried (again) about making us sad/mad. Which makes me think, "Well, then, how come you can't figure this stuff out?" But, that's the fun of parenting, eh?
So, here we are back at home, after having gone to Sonic for our Countdown Calendar activity. For those of you not living around here, Sonic just arrived a couple of weeks ago and is quite the novelty. It was fun - we sat in the car eating our "way-too-comfort-comfort-food" watching a Mickey Mouse Christmas cartoon - quite cozy.
Brayden recited his speech during much of the driving, and completed his homework prior to leaving. But, even now I'm having to remind him to put it all back in his binder so it will make it to school. Sigh.
Last night the whole thing caused John and I such stress that John thought he had a cold sore coming on (and was in tears) and I felt my heart start to do its "flip-flop thing" and palpitations which is my physical symptom for stress. I could link you back to the blog post that talks about all of this, but the short story is that all of the symptomatic stuff is benign and treatable, it just goes to prove how serious we are in our concern for Brayden to start demonstrating more responsibility. (I imagine feeling a bit behind with my own chores/housecleaning/holiday prep and the drama of the whole burn thing might have contributed a bit too).
So, there you go. That's where we're at. We can't wait for Brayden's speech to be successfully done - and of even more significance - to be done with school for 2008. There will be some changes necessary come 2009 - the way things are going right now are just not working. It will probably involve us going back to the structure we began the school year with after school, and probably some school staff communication.
In the meantime, the pace is still fast and I need to stay afloat. Most of the time, I love this season for just that reason, but that's when I'm not getting swept under the current.
=) Challenge, Day Nine: We dropped off treats to both of our college students tonight (unfortunately neither were home, but I trust it brought smiles...)