Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Respect The Wiring - Part 2

If you missed Part 1 of this "Respect The Wiring" series, go to yesterday's post and catch up.

So. I left off telling you what changes we've seen in Dr. D over these last two years.
And how that surprised us as we saw it unfolding.
I'm looking back on it now, seeing the hand of God
over these last two or three years, as we have learned
to step away from our pre-conceived ideas
of who and what he was and let God
lead us toward who Dr. D was becoming... 

It's not that he was necessarily (and still isn't) craving the spotlight or grabbing attention in an obnoxious or showy way. He's not really a show-off. But when he had something funny cross his mind and he shared it, he was learning that the rush of making folks laugh was really a great feeling. I have to admit, this was a tough stage for me. I am HUGE on manners, respect, and appropriate behavior in public. (Probably, as I'm looking back on it all, too concerned about it sometimes. I'm trying to work on that!) I would get so frustrated when he'd tell me how he made his whole English class crack up or how his Social Studies teacher was laughing too hard to correct his interruption to the lesson.

I knew in the back of my mind that the timing issues of his humor and wit were largely a maturity issue but I was still worried that he'd be labeled a troublemaker or class cut-up. Frankly, (and I'm not telling tales that Dr. D hasn't already dealt with) it's a big part of why we brought him home to do cyber-school. I thought he could have a safe place to mature through some of the appropriate time-and-place issues of his obviously natural gift of wit.  Believe me, we had plenty of other good reasons to bring him home these past two years, but this was one that I prayed over more than the others. For example, we also knew that schooling at home would enable him to pursue his grand passion for sports and still have the time to just "be" that his temperament seems to need.

Over these past two years of cyber schooling, I have had more laughs with Dr. D than I ever remember having before. He is one seriously funny kid. And I'm so proud of the times that he's learned to temper his tongue and aim his humor at being truly funny, without hurting anyone in the process. He has grown tremendously in his sensitivity and compassion and empathy for others while he was home. He's also learned some great time management skills as he's juggled a busy football or track season with a really crushing load and pace of work his school perpetually put on his plate. (That, my friends, is another whole story. If you have questions about cyber school, I'm happy to share my experiences. Contact me privately!) 

But we've also had some really tough times - times we held the reins too tightly. Times that he really struggled with submitting to his situation here at home. Struggled with submitting to the "student" job description and all it entailed. It was in these tough times that I began to struggle in my heart and mind with the state of his heart. I found myself fearing another whole type of predator than the ones I worried about when he was a really tender, trusting little guy.

At this point, I must say that I think every mother has one or two particular areas of concern with the individual temperaments of her children. If she is being brutally honest with herself and God, it's been my experience that each mom has something that really drives her to her knees on behalf of a particular child. For me, in this season of Dr. D's life, it was his walk with Christ.

As I said, I saw some great growth in his two years at home in his time management, work ethic, and  comedic timing and sensitivities. But I think that, because he is so different than me in so many areas (except that extrovert thing and maybe the quick, sardonic wit), I had a harder time understanding his process and trusting that it was actually going somewhere good, somewhere eternal. Some days, I really wondered if he would take the faith in which we'd raised him as his own. I was really seeking the Lord regularly and trying to find that balance of letting go and holding tightly. It is a delicate balance, is it not?

It's at this season, when I was battle-weary (from battling myself, the Lord and my son's individual process) that I heard "Respect the Wiring" whispered in my ear that rainy and cold Saturday morning. And, excusing the pun, it's like a light bulb went off when I finally stopped and asked the Lord to explain why it kept ringing in my mind over and over.

My job as Dr. D's momma is to raise him in the ways of the Lord, introduce him to the Savior, give him the support and resources needed to follow the Lord, and let him DO it. But the key was in the LETTING him (and HIM) do it. In his process. In his timing (and the Lord's but surely not mine!). In his way. I needed to Respect the Wiring.

See, when we were trying to key in on his needs in his early childhood for positive role models, we were respecting the wiring that God put in his little heart and mind. Even then, God was wiring him to need to be looking up to someone, following someone worth following.  And when he started getting crazy-rabid-nuts about the Eagles, he was acting out of a need to belong to something bigger than himself. When he was seeking out loud, thrash, scream-o metal music, he was expressing the stuff inside of him. When he started delving into rap music, he was connecting with others' stories and finding a way to tell his own. When he chose rappers who are paraphrasing The Word in all they sing, he was filling his heart and mind with eternal principles and trying to live them out and express them in a way that felt relevant to him.

So, while we were doing some things really well to respect his wiring, I was being reminded gently and clearly that those very things could be the things that would be and, in fact were, leading him to a faith all his own. All my worry and fear was borne out of my lack of trusting. My lack of respect for his wiring. Somewhere in there, I had seriously gotten my wires crossed.

Come back one more time, when I wrap up
this big word picture God has been walking me through!

1 comment:

Aus said...

Needing a part three is really not fair GM -!

But I'll live with it (like I have a choice in the matter)....

but so far it sounds like you're headed the same direction we go...

and I'll take that as a comfort!

hugs - aus and co.