We've long maintained that Eion was sent to us by god to ensure our humility. Without him, I would be out in the world with my two bright, generally well-mannered and largely sweet girls, observing people with wild children thinking, "They should really control those kids." But alas, that smug dream was shattered by E, who ensures that rather than being able to dole it out, I am the recipient of such scorn on a regular basis. [Anyone who has been reading for the past few years can back me up. If you missed those fun times, go back to Life Under the Big Top. The evidence is there.]
He really is the perfect nature vs nurture test case. Before I had kids, I was all about nurture. Surely no child was born destined to be a certain way. If you give them the proper environment, they could be anything, do anything. But nature was laughing and waiting for me, ready to show how you can raise three children exactly the same way and get three outcomes, one of which was determined to take being an asshole to a new level.
Which brings us to Thursday. I was at the tennis shop, reveling in my team's second undefeated week when I got a call from school. It was Mrs. B, the gifted and talented resource coordinator for Crystal Spring. She, having met Maggie and Morrigan, was under the mistaken impression that our third child would be anything like them. I could hear the confusion in her voice when she described how Eion would not do any work. Not matter what she did, he flat out refused to participate. And while not participating, here's the coup de grace, he sat sullenly, picking his nose and (shudder) eating it. For two weeks in a row.
Mrs. B was perplexed. She told me how he really only had three more weeks to show if he had the intellectual stuff to make it into TAG (talented and gifted) which was a good route to entrance to PLATO where his sisters were.
"Well," I said, "he's kind of that guy. We, uh, weren't really expecting him to get into TAG. He hasn't exactly been lighting the academic world on fire." Now, I certainly went on to describe the hellfire he could expect to rain down on him that afternoon and the revocation of video game privileges to which he would be subject but warned as well that it might not work. I told her we would use everything in our arsenal to make sure he acts in a respectful manner but sometimes, he is just impossible to change.
I got the feeling this was not the answer she was expecting.
So we're on day three of no video games and I had Mrs. B send home the work he refused to do so I could make him complete it. It looks like we are in for a long year. And I blame nature.