It's true, it happened to a friend of a friend of mine...

High Achievers. Under achievers. Different Children.

, posted: 20-Dec-2007 21:45

Now there's one in every family. One of the exact opposite of the majority, that is.

Take my good friend who happens to share my first name. Her family is high achieve all over. Both father in laws are top of their own fields, mother in laws - one is a top quilter, the other has been all over the world tramping. Mostly since retiring. Hubby started as an electrical engineer. I remember the early days of PCs, when insurance companies would send stuff to him to make sure there was no fraud occuring with computer claims. He is now a professor, works with (for?) the UN, as well as now being a university lecturer, and does silly things like go to west Africa to get shot at. (If I say anymore I might give him away.) Also the world leader of his field. Hey, he wrote the book... (He doesn't like aussie sheilas too much...)

My good friend? Who's first name is not Moby, I might add, is busy busy busy. If I want to see her she has one free morning a week. Apart from when we meet up on Sunday mornings at church. She teaches music singing and more music (and even more singing). Used to 'so' playgroup extended sessions, but with her junior now an adult she's sort of over it. I could even say her local playgroup was formed with her help.

Kids. All musically gifted. Second one graduated from Berkley in California, Third is in England, having paid her own way through uni here, and done her masters in about six months before the September start in the UK. Unfortunatley never made it to actual young NZ musician of the year, only a finalist. Oldest is a music teacher.

Then there is Junior. I'll get back to him in a minute. He's my Godson.

My family. Hubby is a mechanic by trade. Sold himself short of an engineers degree. He has ADHD. Me, I finished school in Australia and Married him. Didn't know what to do at uni so didn't go, too late for free education now, hey? Child one. Party animal. Passes everything without studying. Still got merits at uni this year with a few parties and lots of work to feed herself. Number three - top of maths and science at aussie high school, just floating now at the local supermarket and sleeping when he's not on his computer. Has lost interest in a career in computers. Had ADHD. Might still have it. Junior. ADHD, Aspergers Syndrome, Opposition Defiance Disorder. (Oh my aching head.) 'will do well when he can organise himself' is the recurring theme of his last report. Well, I hope so.

Then there is my Child Number Two. She is my friend above's Goddaughter. Wonder if it's just a coincidence that our God-children seem to actually belong in our house, not their own?

So, I will describe them both.

Her son went to a new private school because they promised to help him. (Another ADHD child.) Must have worked, he got his cambridge quals, and is at uni. Has been at a university in the Netherlands most of this year. Couldn't speak Dutch, but used to sneak in to lectures at Waikato. He reckons the bigger the 'class' or whatever they call it in universities, the easier it is to slip in uninvited. That's a worry. But she used to tear her hair out over him.

My child was the straight A student. I had screaming each and every time a report/assignment was due because it wasn't perfect. I had screaming each and every time a report came home because she didn't get all A's. Now I have seen all her reports, I guarantee, and where she did not get A's it was because they didn't give grades like that. If it wasn't an A it was an Excellent. While big sister was running away, she was getting an award for Every subject she did. It was a forty degree day and the school hall was still hot at 8pm, and as this long list was read out you could hear people gasping, because she had the most awards of anyone there. She heard those gasps and instantly she stood up even taller than she already was. Next year she had all the A's and the Form Advisers award. Every report and award plastered her bedroom wall until she left home. She left high school in her second last year, she could no longer take the pressure she put herself under. I would rather have an alive drop-out than a dead straight A student. We came to New Zealand and she enrolled in year 13. She left after a term as she didn't want to lose anymore brain cells, as she put it. Now she works in a toy factory but they love her for her intelligence and work ethic. I used to tear my hair out over her. Still do.

My apologies to my friend for spending more time writing about my own child than hers. Oh well, we'll just say she is her God-daughter, after all.

So, Tear you hair out over the different one by all means, but don't forget to treat them all equally.

And make sure they all know how precious they are to you!

Other related posts:
So, How's Junior?
Losing our sponsored child...

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Linda George
New Zealand

Five Children*, Three Cats*,
One Husband, One of Me.
(Oddly enough...)
A few Aussie Accents,
One dedicated Kiwi,
Several ANZACS.
Go Figure.

*One Kitty Kat...

What I write from my life might just help you in yours...