Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Where Has the Time Gone?
He's been a hunter since he was 12 years old and most years he's been able to put some venison on the table (we hunt for cheap, organic meat, not for bloodsport). He's been to Coney Island to work with the homeless and to New Orleans to help in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. This summer alone he has helped put a new roof on three houses and helped build two decks. He's traveled to Arizona to work on a Navajo Reservation and to Wyoming for a grueling backpacking trip. He also worked bringing in hay for a friend's father who is a dairy farmer. Anyone who has done farm work knows bringing in hay is hard, hot, exhausting work. Those aren't the activities of a baby.
Sometimes his dad gets on his case for not having enough ambition but he worked to earn the money to travel to and from Wyoming and to pay for part of his Arizona trip. And though he doesn't have his driver's license yet he is saving up more money to pay for car insurance. In the meantime he doesn't think anything of hopping on his bicycle and pedaling 15 miles one way to go visit a friend. Mind you we do not live in a flat part of the world. There are lots of very steep grades around here. I think some credit is due for not expecting handouts and the parent taxi.
The boy loves sports and excels in them. He was frustrated in baseball and football by testosterone-soaked, neanderthal coaches who motivate by shame and humiliation. He wasn't about to put up with that any longer. He has since discovered track & field, which he LOVES. This year, although he has never before played a single game of soccer in his life he was recruited for the soccer team as a goalkeeper the week before the season started. He's tall, fast, willing to dive, and willing to learn. The coach is happy to have him and even when Isaac made a seriously awful rookie mistake in his first varsity game, costing a goal, the team and the coach laughed it off and regarded it as a teachable moment. He admits he knows NOTHING about the game (as evidenced by his mistake) but he is heartened by the decency of his coach and teammates....and glad to have a fall sport to play. He's come a long way too from the days when he completely tore himself down over any mistake he made on whatever field of play. Oh, and he has continued corresponding with some Navajo students he met in Arizona...so he can continue to encourage them in their athletic pursuits after a couple of them asked for advice with regard to training for their track & field events. He also participates in a basketball group reaching out to at risk youth.