Waterboarding and Bull Goring and Violin… Oh My!

Today was awesome…another one for the record books, in my humble opinion.  N faced a big source of fear and anxiety, E schooled us on lifestyle choices and I was only 25 minutes late to both homeschool groups today!  Yeah!  Also worthy of note:  I didn’t wet my pants in traffic on the way to Evanston.  That’s good for at least a silver star on the calendar, yes?

N’s first violin recital is next month and he wigged out when the topic was first raised by his teacher.  He was truly upset at the mere thought of playing in this horror show of torture.  I’m pretty confident that, given the choice between, say, waterboarding and violin recital, he would choose waterboarding.  Or a good old-fashioned bull goring.

This doesn’t fit his usual tendency to embrace opportunities to entertain an audience, so I worried over it for a couple of weeks.  I certainly don’t care if he chooses not to participate, but I was concerned that his reaction was so emotional and panic-stricken.  To choose not to participate due to lack of interest is completely acceptable in my book.  To avoid something that causes overwhelming anxiety at the first thought, however, merits further consideration.   

Long story short-ish, he was afraid the kids would boo and hiss at him if he made a mistake!  He knew the parents would clap…that’s what parents do.  He said parents seem to like when kids make mistakes; it’s those jerks they gave birth to that wreck N’s confidence.  We’ve been talk, talk, talking it through and came upon a solution he was quite jazzed about.  Today he played a practice “recital” at Many Rivers (MRU), our main homeschool/unschool group, in front of at least 35 or 40 kids and parents.  He was relaxed, had fun and says he’s cured!  He told me he has overcome his fear, thanks to our incredibly supportive friends who didn’t even heckle him once.  Joy!  E even helped with words of encouragement, such as “Don’t forget to tune your bow!”  E was also quick to inform me that he yelled “Encore!” twice.  This development is a huge deal and I couldn’t be more proud of my peeps.

We had a few errands to do after our group parted ways this afternoon.  Number one on the list was Toys ‘R’ Us for a Lego set that N and E have been waiting for since December.  Due to a bit of dizziness while driving, we stopped short of our goal and had a very early dinner at my most hated fast food establishment.  Let’s just say “M” is for Myocardial Infarction…and shameful Marketing to kids.

Those famed Golden Arches had N belly moaning in no time flat.  I can count on one hand how many times he’s eaten there (I think!), so it was pretty funny (in a sad, grease-laden way) to hear him groan, while laying in the booth, that he felt like he’d put on a few pounds.  E, my sweet child, is always looking for ways to help or offer his opinion.  He said to his bloated brother, “N, you need to eat healthy food and get regular exercise.”  *snicker*  Indeed, Grasshopper.

E continued, “Momma, can we make some ice cream without sugar?  We could mix it up ourselves and then when it’s time to add sugar, we just…won’t.  Can we?”  Sounds delicious, though Jeff said tonight he thought it’d be like eating a bowl of sour cream.

Given my inability to tell time, Jeff had to pick the kids up in the toy store parking lot so I could hit the road to Evanston for HSGS, another of our homeschool groups that happened to have a planning meeting this evening.  I *planned* to be there on time, but, alas, was not.

Thankyouverymuch to the big, dumb giraffe who can’t keep Legos in stock when we need them.  It’ll be November before we fulfill the boy’s dreams of owning more choice material possessions of the brick variety.  Jeff, N and E drove home, sans effing Legos, and had a manly-man’s night of apples, water, pizza and Spongebob.


  1. ChereMere said,

    April 14, 2010 at 8:38 am

    Good for E. Iam glad he had a positive experience with performing. I agree with you that it was something to help him deal with and see that it is not that scary. Ir rather, that the bad thing you fear is not likely to happen

    Sorry about the LEGOs. Can you order them online?

  2. Kim B. said,

    April 14, 2010 at 10:38 am

    We’ll order them online..actually, I need to do that immediately before I forget.

    Yes, I definitely wanted him to understand that his fear was almost cartoon-like in that no recital audience would ever boo and hiss him. His teacher is fabulous and talked to him about the other kids in the audience being siblings, like E, or fellow participants (many being first timers like himself). This is the “least likely” demographic for unruly or agressive audience participation.

    We’ll see how it goes!

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