GUEST BLOG POST - Your Inner Vision by Rochelle Jewel Shapiro
There’s so much I’d like to tell the soon-to-be parents, but I stay in their good graces by keeping my lips zipped unless asked, so if you have a few moments, I’d like to tell you what I’d tell them. Believe that your child is on his own special path to a bright future and hold fast to it, no matter what.
That’s just what I had been determined to do when my son was born, but once he started school, the bright vision I'd held for him became as blurry as a windshield streaked by worn wiper blades.
In pre-school, his teacher phoned to complain that he was noisy during transition. I chuckled. “You should have heard me screaming during transition when I was in labor with him,” I said. She didn’t chuckle back. Instead, she rattled off a list of complaints. He dumped sand in the water table and water in the sand table. He festooned the bathroom with toilet paper and hid so long in the closet that she almost went crazy until she found him.
She’s crazy, I thought.
But in elementary school, the complaints kept coming. He didn’t do his work in school and rarely turned in his homework. Though he read encyclopedias at home, he was in remedial reading at school. It must have been as exasperating for him as it was for me.
Once, in the middle of the day, the doorbell rang. I looked out the peephole. No one was there. The bell rang again. I opened the door. Charles, a second grader then, stood there in his snowsuit.
“What are you doing home?” I demanded.
“There was a substitute teacher,” he said and continued nonchalantly to the kitchen to pour himself some milk.
Despite having crossed major streets and risked being snatched by a pervert, he didn’t think he had done anything wrong. He moved to the beat of his own bongo drums.
I took him for hearing and eye tests. I took him to a neurologist, a psychologist, a learning disabilities specialist, a tutor. I gave him time-outs, took his favorite toys from his room, and cancelled play dates. Nothing helped. At home, he made costumes, clothespin figurines, strawberry carton towers scaled by plastic soldiers. He amassed a fund of knowledge about whales, the stars, and dinosaurs. At school, he only amassed poor grades and complaints. No matter what teacher he had, how stimulating the curriculum, he didn’t like tasks appointed by others. He wanted to do only what he decided upon.
My neighbors would say, I bet you just came home from your son’s school.” They weren’t psychic. They saw the tears in my eyes from hearing, “He’s such a nice boy, but…”
Then, when he was a junior in high school, he took a job in a local music store. There an angel in the form of a bratty rich girl turned his life around.
“CD Boy,” she’d say, snapping her fingers, “get me this. Ger me that.”
He figured if he didn’t buckle down in school, this would be his future—minimum wage and maximum scorn.
He managed to pick up his grades enough to get into a state school and while there, took a job in the outside world each semester to motivate himself to stay in school.
Today, he’s a well-respected, affluent financial advisor with family and friends who adores him. The moral, I guess, is that if your child isn’t doing well in school, don’t ever believe that he hasn’t a wonderful future. Get him the help he might need, but the biggest help you can give him is that no matter what his problem is, hold fast to your bright vision for him. It will come about somehow in ways you couldn’t have predicted..
Rochelle Jewel Shapiro, author of Miriam the Medium (Simon and Schuster), is a psychic who works by phone like her fictional character, Miriam. Shapiro’s psychic gifts have been written about in Redbook, The Jerusalem Post, Newsweek, The New Times (Lives), and more. Visit her new site http://www.rochellejewelshapiro.com/