Friday, June 24, 2011

Update on Gary

So, Gary got credit for his English class, on the condition that he take economics in summer school. Since he had a day-time job, he got permission to take Econ in the digital learning academy. Of course, the class started this week and by that time he had quit the job, but we won't go there.

So far this summer he has worked for about a week painting houses. He quit that job because, well, because he didn't like it, but officially because he had to drive into The City and couldn't afford the gas. He got a job in a plant and had to quit that because they wanted him to work 60 hours a week. (I was out of town and do not know if I could have persuaded him that that was a stupid reason for an 18 year old trying to move out on his own to quit a job.)  He only worked that job one day. He went to his martial arts class and cracked a rib later that day and was told not to work for two days.

We got a letter from the insurance saying that because he got a speeding ticket back in December his car insurance was going up. Again, I was out of town and Roland just isn't as good at being tough with teenagers as I am. When I got back I explained to him that he really could not drive, except to go to work, until he started paying us $25 a month to help pay for it.

I used all my tough-teen skills, which means that instead of telling him that I would not allow him to drive I explained that I would be happy to go with him to the bank to set up an account so he could cash the two checks he had. I would further be happy to let him use those checks to pay us the $25 first even though he has already asked us for a loan based upon both of them. I pointed out to him that this would mean that he would be able to drive again in less than 24 hours!

For whatever reason, he has been unable to present himself during business hours for the past couple of days and so has not yet gone to the bank.

Today he has an interview to as frozen yogurt store. I am sure he expects to drive himself, but I am considering given him a lift as I have an errand to accomplish in the same area. Of course I will once again be all that is generous, completely overlooking the fact that my generosity will prevent him from taking any side trips while he has the car.

It is obvious to anyone who is not Gary that he is anxious about moving out on his own. He may even be depressed. As always, everything that he plans to do will be easy. He is excited and confident. Everything he currently needs to do is either easy or not worth doing for some reason or another. We have been down this path with kids enough that it no longer makes me crazy. I've gotten really good at this supportive attitude during which I am actually making his life as uncomfortable as possible. You know, given that he has a job interview he will be able to buy himself deodorant and a hair cut very soon!

If I had been posting more regularly, you would have been on the roller coaster with us. Starting jobs at which he was going to be making lots of money allowing him to move out in two weeks, only to have those jobs crash and burn. You would have had to listen to me congratulate myself multiple times on how zen-like I have become.

I will try to keep you better informed as we progress through the summer.


  1. So good to hear from you again!

  2. I bow down at your Zen-ness. The Gary roller coaster would drive me crazy. But glad that he is going to graduate, maybe. Have you heard from his sister? How is she doing in her new-ish placement?

  3. Helen, Gary's sister, graduated from high school last month -- one year early. She will continue to live with her current family while she starts high school until at least her 18th birthday, possibly her full freshman year. She really wants to go to an out of state college starting her sophomore year.


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