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The Boy Is More Than Okay

by Twitchy on June 21, 2013

I was planning to post about my boy today and how he’s handled camp this week because last year was horrid and I worried about it. Given there’s been a lot of talk about men behaving badly lately some bloggers have been singing the praises of their boys today, so I’ll frame it that way too. (Sorry if my examples don’t shed such a positive light on some other teens, I so wish it were not the case.)

If you didn’t already know, Mr13 is a little bit different from the mainstream. As I am staunchly person-first in my approach to the world, the labels fall behind who he is- even if they do make the world trickier for him to negotiate. He’s generally younger than his years and peers but there are so many ways in which he is ahead of them, ways that make me so proud of who he is and chooses to be. I just wish others valued this more.

Mr13 finds school a challenge. Not just the bewildering size of the place and the surroundings or the work but the baffling behaviour patterns of some teenagers. Yet everything he says makes sense:

Why is swearing cool? I don’t like it. (Bad Mummy.)
Why do they all have to do the same things and copy each other? (What is peer group pressure?)
Why are they mean to me? I didn’t do anything to them. (Absolutely right.)
Why does bullying even happen? I wouldn’t stand by and watch someone else go through it. (I don’t know why some people can’t control themselves. I know you wouldn’t accept it.)

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Time: After school. Meeting place: The tramp. A boy and his dog catch up together.

I’ve written before how forgiving and philosophical he is if something unpleasant happens. Some people simply don’t deserve him and yet the same ones can’t seem to see his brilliant qualities. Boy was I relieved on Wednesday to collect him with a smile upon his face. He’d tried surfing and even caught some waves. I hit him with so many questions!

“I had an alright time. I loved the surfing, but no one sat with me on the bus rides.” (Awww, my heart.)

He had some interesting coming of age questions for me, terms and phrases he’d heard at camp. We discuss them in a matter-of-fact way, and he takes them in his surprisingly capable stride. (I, for instance would’ve been grossed out at that age.) He just nods and walks away with his answers. He knows all about the birds and the bees and lady business but there is nothing sensationalist or lewd in his manner about it.

He’s affectionate, loving and demonstrative towards family, particularly his mum and sister. He doesn’t care who knows. He often tells his little sister things like: “Your hair looks lovely today”, “I like what you’re wearing” or “my sister is the cutest”, despite her attitude toward him running hot and cold at 10 minute intervals. He’s fantastic at little animation movies and doesn’t hesitate to share his techy little tricks with others who wish to do the same.

My boy deserves far more recognition for his beautiful qualities and more friends than he has. It takes a hell of a lot more courage to walk the different road, to think for yourself and be okay with your own company more often than you’d like. To repeatedly endure and forgive the bad treatment dished out and still want to go to school each day. He treats people with respect. While the world tends to focus on his weaknesses, these are amazing strengths that others can regrettably lack.

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I love my boy’s eye. He found this ‘ocarina rock’ on the beach at school camp.

Yes he can be noisy, demanding and socially naive or awkward. But when it comes to the big things, it’s not a biased Mum speaking when I say he’s not the one who needs to change.

His time will come, bless his darling heart.

 

 

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Emily @ Have a laugh on me June 23, 2013 at 7:28 pm

He sounds like such a sweet and caring soul, I really really hope my boys turn out like that. But I can imagine at his age it’s not appreciated, but 20 years down the track and he will be miles ahead of the pack xx

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Sonia Life Love Hiccups June 23, 2013 at 4:14 pm

He sounds like an amazing kid and one day the time will come in his life where he will be admired by his peers for not being a sheep and they will seek to be individuals themselves. It always breaks my heart when one of my boys makes the comment “no one played with me, or no one sat with me today”. But I have to remind myself that by the time they are a adult – they will not remember it one iota, but the empathy for others that they will have learned will remain with them. xx

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Kaz @ Melting Moments June 22, 2013 at 8:39 pm

He sounds like a fine young man. Kids are so cruel sometimes. It just breaks my heart. I have taught many kids who have similar challenges. I remember them so fondly because of how they allowed me to see things differently.

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Twitchy June 23, 2013 at 1:11 am

That’s beautiful Kaz, thank you. I think our experience has opened my eyes more too.

iSophie June 22, 2013 at 8:25 pm

This is a really lovely post! You do have an amazing boy there, and I hope he never lets them tear him down.

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Oculus Mundi June 22, 2013 at 6:54 am

You break my heart a little every time you write about your boy. Bless his gentle heart.

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Twitchy June 23, 2013 at 1:14 am

Thank you A. People just don’t make sense sometimes, do they? They’ll go through years and years of trying to be like everyone else before they come to the place my boy is already at: just being himself.

Nathalie Brown June 21, 2013 at 10:26 pm

My beautiful friend, your son is divine as are all your family. I’m working my butt off to change kids so that they accept everyone’s differences xxxx

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Twitchy June 21, 2013 at 11:24 pm

Thank you Natalie. I adore your heart too, and everything you stand for xxxx

Danya Banya June 21, 2013 at 8:59 pm

School age is so hard for those that walk a different road. But he’s lucky to have a mum such as you that’s helping him carve his own way. xx

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traceyb65 June 21, 2013 at 8:55 pm

every word you wrote mirrors my son’s own experience … few friends, prone to falling out with the friends he does have over misunderstandings, teased and yep, bullied to the brink of depression. but with his younger sister he is gentle and patient, and he can hold down any conversation with an adult that takes the time to bring him out of his snailshell. and i can tell from his teachers comments who ‘gets’ him and who couldn’t be bothered (ffs, it’s your JOB, teachers!). we have had many conversations this year about ‘friends’ who are organ grinders (start the trouble) and monkeys (join in), because it is TOO hard to NOT fit in, and the vulnerable are exploited for ‘cool’ points.
funnily enough, his Year 2 teacher picked it, and it is one of the reasons i am encouraging him to do well enough for university admission … i reckon he will find his tribe there. much love to your boy. xt

ps sorry for the comment bomb!

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Twitchy June 21, 2013 at 9:31 pm

No worries Tracey. This is why I share- so fewer of us feel alone on our road. Much love to you and your boy xxx (PS grrr to phone comments! Just fixed it all.)

Grace June 21, 2013 at 7:56 pm

Oh, Twitchy. This was just so beautiful. Of course he has beautiful qualities. The thing is, it’s probably not the time or age group for them to be fully accepted and appreciated. Which totally sucks. But kids are just that.
I have this hunch one of the twinlets will be similar to your darling Mr 13. Just keep the faith, Twitchy. He will be recognised. No doubt he will x

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Twitchy June 23, 2013 at 1:11 am

Thank you Grace, I do hope so x

Lisa June 21, 2013 at 4:59 pm

Oh, this really spoke to me – my little guy is 12 and his school camp is coming up, he has medical issues and often feels ‘different’ to the other kids. I admit I teared up a little reading this. Your boy sounds awesome.

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Twitchy June 21, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Thank you Lisa. I often fear I may be getting too detailed about his personal life but ultimately I know he’d say he has nothing to hide. He wants to share his experience with others. Best wishes to you and your boy x

Judy @Australian Inspirational Women June 21, 2013 at 4:47 pm

Yes, he’s definitely going to be a great adult. He seems to be very analytical like my husband.
He does deserve respect. But that’s the world for you. Hopefully, he will find some friends that are more like him.

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Twitchy June 21, 2013 at 5:49 pm

Quality over quantity, Judy 😉 A handful of dear friends is better than loads of not-so-great ones.

tahlia @ the parenting files June 21, 2013 at 2:44 pm

heart melts… why is difference an issue? I just don’t understand. A gorgeous soul. I hope that he finds his niche soon and people that treat him with the respect he deserves x

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Twitchy June 21, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Difference is ‘not cool’ when you’re at a life stage where everyone wants to fit in. It’s painful now, but after school is when his life will really begin. Thanks for your kind thoughts, Tahlia.

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