Stephen's challenge becomes my challenge...

My 8yr old son Stephen is going through a couple of challenges right now.
Helping him through these challenges is a parental responsibility.
It's tough. The problems, the questions, the solutions, the possibilities...
It's all very confusing and trying to a young individual.

Stephen signed up to take chorus in school, among many other activities. Chorus meets once a week on Friday mornings, one hour before school starts. So, Stephen has to get up an hour earlier to catch the early bus to school.

Last Friday, he told me that chorus was "stupid and lame." I was rather shocked. He was always eager to go to chorus other days. I asked him if that was him speaking, or perhaps it was something a friend said to him. He told me it was his thought.

I asked him why, but he could not give me a reason. Then I thought about it a few minutes...
you see, Stephen recently had expanders put in his mouth. He's had to adjust to eating and speaking with them. He drools a lot and "slurps" his spit a lot. I was guessing perhaps he felt a bit self-conscious about them, or the fact that there is a noticeable speech impediment now.

Stephen and I talked about quitting, or perhaps staying in until the concert in February. We talked about commitment, loyalty to his fellow chorus members, not to mention all the hard work that the teacher and students put in already. We also talked about sometimes doing things we don't like because it's the right thing to do and builds character.

I'm on the fence.

If he does quit, am I teaching him that he can just quit anything he starts? Or that he has a voice in the decision-making process? He did choose to sign up after-all.  If he chooses to quit, it won't be the end of the world.

Stephen is not a quitter. He's played on sports teams, he's in the art club, the kindness and caring club, the chess club, and he joined a 4H baking
class this year. I think he just took on a bit more than he could handle this year, and he's admitting that it's a challenge. I think it will be fine if he bows out of chorus gracefully. He will do so with writing a letter to the music teacher explaining his decision.

I feel this is a good decision and we did not enter into it lightly. We prayed about it, discussed it thoroughly, and came to a conclusion. In the long run, Stephen is ultimately responsible for his decisions, even though mom and dad help him along the way; and I think there were a few very good lessons learned in this particular challenge.


  1. I think you made the right decision. These challenges were unexpected and I like that he is going to write a letter. It shows that he is not taking this lightly. I'm sure the teacher will appreciate it and you are instilling some great qualities in this young man. You are a great Momma!


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