I am especially sensitive to good health hygiene after working in the medicine and public health. I’ve swabbed, sampled, cultured, grew and studied many pathogens in class and for work. I have also studied, worked and planned for real and potential epidemics. At work I am driven to distraction when co-workers insist on coming into work during the contagious cycle of an illness, do not properly cover a cough or sneeze, […]
Tag Archive for ‘mom’
My son was here for a few hours yesterday. Spring break is underway and he is on his way to watch spring training – sports and the stats are one of his passions since he was a toddler. Some time in the future I will blog about how “deeply” INTJ he is/was growing up, but now I want to talk about the young man I had lunch with yesterday.
John changed his major 3 times and tried 2 internships since starting college. He did not complete either internship. I supported the decision to stop. This was a child who would never attempt any activity unless he knew he could perform it without a flaw. It took years to convince him that there will be things he may never know he likes and can be passionate about unless he tries – because somethings cannot be learned by watching.
He is excited that the golf course is opening the week after spring break ends – he tried golf and his game is improving. He loves the game, isn’t good at it, but is learning to play. He talked at length about his major – finance. He found his passion with numbers. He is involved with 2 research projects involving finance and loves being part of that. He loves statistics. Though he is the only undergrad on the project, thus has the “grunt” work, he loves being part of something bigger. He has decided on law school. He feels good, he is eating a healthy diet, plays basketball several times a week.
He and a few other students started a new student club on campus – one to promote Leadership skills. This was a quality recognized in him during high school, and had he been in a large public school, that skill would likely have gone undeveloped. But the teachers at his school used every opportunity to get John to exercise that skill, in a safe environment, then competitively (at his request.) His high school was not satisfied with a 4.0 – they were set on developing the potential of every student. And now John helps others who want to develop that skill. He was also coaching his extroverted sister on how to meet new people and make new friends.
John is a 19-year-old junior. He has a scholarship and finances his own education. He knows how to think critically and that choices have consequences. He hit a bump or two in the road the first year at college, freedom + peer pressure. I don’t fix things for him, but I am by his side so he knows he is not alone. (He had to go through the rebellious stage at some point.) He knows he can tell me anything. I may get upset, but that will pass and I will always be there for him.
We talked for several hours on the few topics I mentioned above – remember, we are INTJ’s 🙂 Then, something very strange happened. He morphed from a financial wiz kid into a typical, college kid – truly a physical difference. His bright blues eyes, softer, mouth, smiling – “I have something to tell you; I have a girlfriend.” They met in a class, worked on a project, then started “hanging out.” He poured out details about her, his eyes and face glowing. My heart is happy for him. (I am ignoring the fact that she is graduating in a few months, and he is going to law school.) I did catch that she can talk sports, her family lives a stone’s throw from my family’s grave yard and that the two of them are “exclusive.” I just wanted to listen to the joy in his voice, the sound of happiness of connecting with another person. He needed this type of connection with another person.
I asked him if the age difference bothered him; he has always been sensitive to being the youngest in his group. I wish I had a picture of the look on his face or at least the talent to describe it in words – “Are you kidding me? I’m 19. I have a beautiful, kind, brilliant, 23 year old as my girlfriend. What part of that would bother me?” Yeah, he’s a guy.
(Now, how do I get her to take the Myers-Briggs assessment….hmmm… not the interfering mom, just collecting more data 😉 )
The fastest way to break the cycle of perfectionism and become a fearless mother is to give up the idea of doing it perfectly – indeed to embrace uncertainty and imperfection.