Monday, May 16, 2011

The $180,000 Light Bulb

Oh, to be fifteen again and have that unfailing optimism that college will accept you with D average grades, accounting firms' starting salaries will begin at $180,000 a year, and that everything your parents tell you is a bunch of crap.

First of all, I was under no pretense that I wanted to be an accountant when I was fifteen.  I wasn't quite sure what accountants did but I knew it had something to do with math, formal business attire, and cramped working conditions so therefore, it was crossed off of my life's ambitions immediately.  No can do, especially the math part.  It's true that math is an entirely different language.  I attempted it and it was one that my brain could not translate.  No harm, no foul.  I new my limitations which was everything past long division.  It's interesting how math minded people try to force knowledge upon you such as how to move decimal points into percentages.  Eric, for the last time, STOP!  I don't care.  Thank you.

I do recall begging my mom to sign a waiver in high school allowing me to go into Algebra 2 after I had barely squeaked by Algebra 1 with a D.  I could not go into the lower math course.  My pride was at stake.  After all, my other classes were strong A's and B's.  The D was a total fluke.  I was convinced Algebra would be a light bulb.  It would turn on eventually.  I was certain of it.  Not only did it not turn on, but it caught fire.  D-.  Dismal!  Geometry.  At least I entertained Mrs. McGuire for the year.  She always called on me for an answer when she needed a giggle.  I'm glad I could oblige.

I've read the magazines and the parenting handbooks.  I know teenagers are stubborn.  I also know he's going to find out in a few years that we were right about hitting the books and studying.  It's so painful to watch him throw away his college education because he's determined to prove us wrong.  In his opinion he doesn't need to study because he's smarter than the rest of his class.  Deep sigh.  That's the Aspergian stuff coming through.  The autistic, I'm better than my peers, they're a bunch of idiots, and I'm above them all Asperger's syndrome stuff.  It breaks my heart because we can't force him to study.  His grades have guaranteed him a summer without his phone, TV, Gameboy, e-reader, etc.  Oh, what a lovely summer it will be with my surly fifteen year old.

In a couple of months, when he turns sixteen, he's going to expect us to sign off on driver's education.  For the umpteenth time, we'll have another discussion about his grades and that it's a privilege, not a right, to drive when he turns sixteen.  We'll also talk about gas money, that he'll need a job, and we won't allow him to work with the grades he's keeping.  He'll argue, yell, and carry on telling us once again that we don't know anything.  Sound familiar? 

Oh, to be fifteen again!  I'd like to make a $180,000 a year too.  Somehow as the mother of this kiddo, I feel I have earned it and I don't even need to be good at math.  Hey, I think the light bulb finally turned on!




1 comment:

Leigh Ann said...

Algebra alluded me as well...I did get a B in Geometry, and in Mrs. McGuire's class. :)

I have had to already start the speeches of 'See? Sometimes Moms do know a thing or two!' w/my 6 & 4 yr olds. Good grief, it's gonna be hell come their teen years. I even bought myself a shirt for Mother's Day. It says "Mothers...even when they're wrong, their RIGHT!"
I wish you luck and love this summer, my friend. And FYI...107 days till September 1st!