Yesterday was one of those “really glad to be a mom” days. My hubby and I were at a technical college with our son Jackson. We had been there for awhile and were listening to the orientation specialist tell us all about the college. She also told us all about herself, her daughter and other irrelevant things. I understand sales. She was trying to connect. But she was trying too hard. And she was interrupting me every time I tried to ask a question or explain Jack’s academic history to her.
Our son Jackson did not take the traditional school route. He was a square peg in a round educational system and his exceptionality did not fit into the neat little holes the public, private or virtual school systems offered. Even if we shoved really hard. I know because I tried. He eventually found his own path and got his GED before he would have graduated traditional high school. He got a job and is now seeking higher education. I couldn’t be prouder of him. Until yesterday.
About 30 minutes into the orientation Jack put both his hands on the desk and began speaking. “Excuse me,” he said to the lady talking to us. “Please don’t be offended, I really don’t mean to be rude or offensive. But I believe you are trying to win us over and you should know that in order to win our confidence and trust you should try to get us to like you by engaging in conversation with us, not by interrupting us at every opportunity. My mother has been trying to explain my history to you and you have continually interrupted her since the moment we arrived and I find that to be very rude. I would really appreciate it if you would let her finish a complete sentence. Again, I don’t mean to be rude but I really felt the need to say that. Thank you.”
Yep. He went there. He went there in front of an adult, and of course, in front of me and his step-dad. He went there for me. I remember what it was like being 18. I remember being scared talking to adults other than my parents and family members. I remember being fearful of criticizing them, even constructively. I don’t know if Jack felt that way. I don’t know if he did that merely out of his own discomfort or out of his allegiance to me. I don’t care. All I know is that my boy took a chance to stand up for me. And I was damned proud.
The nice lady finally found her voice fifteen minutes later and with a courteous restraint, she finished the orientation. When we got to the car I called Jack over to me. He knew I would bring it up. He knew I would embarrass him outside of the building because I didn’t have the chance to tell him how awesome he was inside. He knew I would hug him. And bless him, he let me do all of those things. Yeah, it was a good day to be a mom.