I noticed that my youngest daughter was unusably quiet this weekend and was not her normal quirky self. Knowing what time of year it was, I had my druthers as to what the culprit was. So seeing that I had her full and undivided attention in the van this morning, heading for school, I asked her if she tried her best on her essay paper, which is her second attempt.
"Mom, I enjoy essay writing", she cried, "and I wanted to be able to express myself the best that I could. But the paper I was going to write I can't anymore because it ended up so big of a project I would have never gotten it done, so now I'm writing a new one so I can hand it in, so the teacher doesn't think I'm a slacker. It'll be late, but I don't care."
To do this, she has put her other classes in jeopardy.
I tried to explain to her that there will be other times in life where she can express herself outside of the confines of the Department of Education's layout for high school English essay papers. It isn't worth failing the rest of her classes for this one paper. Her English teacher isn't going to care that she didn't give up...he will just count the paper null and void because she turned the paper in late. Again.
"I just want to do something I can be proud of", my daughter sniffed, as she exited the van.
"I'm proud of you." I replied from the recesses of my heart.
I don't think that counts though.