On Monday evening, I twittered that Austin was grounded forever. I forgot about it until a few of you asked me why he was grounded.
Monday morning, Austin asked me if he could stay home from school because he didn't feel well. He said he felt like throwing up.
Of course, once he mentioned throwing up, I should have immediately told him, "Then you're definitely going to school! I don't want you to throw up HERE!" Instead, I asked, "Why do you want to stay home? Do you have an assignment due today or something?"
"No!" came his indignant answer.
So I told him he could stay home. "Go back to bed and rest," I said.
This was the first time this year that he's said anything like this so I didn't have any reason to think he was faking it just to get a day off. And in all honesty, I'm not against giving the kids an unofficial day off now and then just because they're tired and need a "mental health day".
Austin went back to bed and got up around lunchtime. His stomachache seemed to have magically disappeared. I asked him one more time, "Are you sure you didn't want to stay home because you have an assignment that's due today?"
"Nope," he answered again.
The day went on; he hung out and vegged; I did some writing. When Savannah got out of school, she asked me, "Do you know why Austin wanted to stay home today?"
Alarm bells went off.
"He told me he had an assignment due today and he hadn't done it," Savannah continued.
"Oh he did, did he?"
I approached Austin and said, "I'll ask you one more time. And think very carefully about your answer. Do you have any assignments due today?"
Austin faltered a bit, but once more, said, "No".
I lost it. "I happen to know that you DO have an assignment due! Not only did you blow it off all weekend, but you lied to me about it THREE times! And then, when you got out of going to school, did you take advantage of your time and complete the assignment today? Noooo! Go to your room NOW!"
I took a few minutes to pick my middle kids up from school and to cool off a bit.
I thought about grounding him until he turned 21, but decided that wasn't enough time. I concluded that eternity would probably be sufficient.
I informed him that since TV, video games, and computer had taken up the time he should have spent working on his project, I was taking those things away from him for 2 weeks. I believe I'll also give him a paper to write on the subject of lying and how it ruins trust and thus relationships. He'll have plenty of time to work on it since he'll be sitting in his room doing nothing more than homework and reading for the next 2 weeks.
It makes me crazy that the kid is so smart, but just couldn't care less about school and grades. He reminds me of someone.... (Umm, sorry again for making you guys nuts, Mom and Dad.)
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