School, Uncategorized

How to raise that grade

I came home from work the other day and was finishing up a phone call in the car. I could hear faint music coming from somewhere. I checked my car radio. Wasn’t on. I checked my work phone and personal phone in case Spotify was running… nope. Was my neighbor playing classical music while he worked outside? I opened the car door and could hear the distinct strains of… an alto sax. Jack’s alto sax. He was playing up in his room and the window was open allowing me to hear his band class in progress. Virtually of course.

Jack opted, with permission, to attend school 100% remotely, which was a change from the 2 days a week that he was going into school. There was a documented case of COVID-19 at his school, and we just didn’t want to play the odds. If his grades started to suffer, we would opt back into school at the next trimester. So far, he’s holding it together.

Jack: (via text to me while I was at work and he was at home) LET’S GOOOOOOOOOOO

me: Huh?

I looked above that text and saw a screenshot of an email from his band teacher saying that his “zeroes” for participation for forgetting his sax (when he made the choice to stay home and left his sax at school), would be changed to 80’s after Jack made a convincing argument via email to his teacher. Probably saying it wasn’t his fault, etc. etc.

me: Hey, not bad Jack. I’m glad you stood up for yourself and got the grades changed. I almost thought the letter was going to be a bad one.

Jack: You can get the teachers to do anything these days if you mention a hardship or COVID.

me: Sigh.

So, back to the car. I got out and walked into the garage. Hmmm, the door was open. That meant that Jack…actually walked Moca?

The laundry was running… he did his wash and put the clothes in the dryer??

I was feeling a bit faint.

I looked in the kitchen. The dishes were put away. The dishwasher was EMPTY.

Jack came downstairs.

me: Are you in between classes?

Jack: Yeah. For… about 3 more minutes.

me: What happened today? Everything was done?? Are you trying to give me a heart attack?

Jack: No, I just knew you would tell me to do it all anyway so I just figured I would get it done.

me: Wow thanks.

Jack: Soooo, since I’m not going rowing today can I play X Box for awhile after school?

me: Ahhh there it is…

Conversations, Health

3.19.20

I’m currently listening to Jack upstairs on Xbox talking to his friend from England. It seems like a regular night, except he would never be allowed to play Xbox on a school night. Tonight isn’t a typical school night. So much has changed since my last post it’s hard to wrap my head around it.

The only thing I see or hear about all day long (unless I stop listening) is the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). In January we hadn’t even heard of the virus and were celebrating Jack’s 15th birthday. In February we were still praying for Australia to stop burning. In mid-Feb, at least here in CT, we really started to hear the news of the virus spreading. But still, it was “so far away.” Is t it always? Until it’s right in your back yard.

I flew out to California just in the nick of time and made it back by March 2nd just before the shit really started to hit the fan.

Now, just two weeks later, we are working 100% remotely, schools are closed, and you fear going to the grocery store for milk. We’ve all stocked up on food and supplies. We are being very selective about who we will see in person, even avoiding our own family members. The infected numbers are rising and people are beginning to die very close to home.

Jack and I have hunkered down in a sort of uneasy truce. I’m all “we are going to keep a similar routine during the week” and he’s all “I don’t have any school work whatsoever to do!” Which has been true up til now. Enrichment … that was all we could do for studies… and let me tell you, that will only go so far. This boy needs structure and will thrive on it. I’m very glad our town finally handed out the distance learning protocol, at least from a few of Jack’s classes. He was hard at work at 8am. (Luckily we didn’t have to get up at the god-awful hour of 5:55) This is much more humane!

And, since I don’t have to drive to work, and then home again for lunch, I’m saving an hour and a half of driving each day. Woohoo!

Jack: Can I go play Xbox now?

me: It’s 10am Jack, Sheesh!

Jack: But I did all my work.

me: We have to keep a regular schedule so go read something.

Jack: I don’t have anything left to do!

me: On school days you—

Jack: It’s not a school day because we don’t have school!

me: I have some chores for you then.

Jack: On school days I don’t have chores! Ha!

Repeat this in various ways about 15 times and you’ll almost be where I am mentally right now. 😱

Jack spent some time with his nerf guns, dug out some old army guys and set up a battalion for the cats to knock over, he has cooked dinner twice and baked a banana cake, he vacuumed and cleaned a few toilets. These are things that wouldn’t have happened a few weeks ago. I’m going to try and be thankful for the little things. We’ve been forced to slow down, which is exactly what we needed.

For now, we will look fir the silver lining… we are healthy, settled in comfortably at home and currently wanting for nothing. Many are much worse off than we are. I have nothing to complain about. Except when Jack and his friends hold impromptu remote kazoo concerts. (Don’t ask)

I hope you are all safe as well and getting through this tough time as best you can. Keep looking for the silver lining, which is time with your families that you most likely would not have gotten under normal circumstances.

Peace and love from our house to yours!

(Gotta run, Moca is playing with a piece of cat poop again for the 2nd time today!!!!)

Gahhh!