Thursday, March 22, 2012

What Are You Gonna Be When You Grow Up?

Just a few minutes ago I was talking to my mom on the phone. Garrett came in and asked me if he could do something. I said no. Like he always does, he began to negotiate with me. I finally said, "The answer is no. It doesn't matter how you ask the question. It doesn't matter how much you try to get me to say yes. It doesn't matter how many different ways you ask me. We are not doing that." He turned on his heels and stomped back outside. I said to my mom, "I'm not letting him be anything besides an attorney when he grows up."

My mom laughed and said something about apples and trees. Well, really she said, "That's what I used to say about you." And, really, I think I would have been a pretty good lawyer. I like to ask questions in all sorts of ways. I like to try to get people to say yes. So, yeah, the apple may not have fallen very far from the tree.

A couple minutes later the following conversation occurred.

G: Mom, what's an macounty?
Me: A county?
G: No, a macourty?
Me: I don't know.
G: A macountant?
Me: An accountant?
G: Yeah.
Me: Someone who works with money and how much you have and where it's going.
G: No. Not that. An attourmy.
Me: An attorney?
G: Yeah.
Me: Where did you hear that word?
G: You said it on the phone.
Me: You heard me say that I want you to be an attorney when you grow up.
G: Yes.
Me: (laughing) You can be whatever you want to be when you grow up.
G: But what is it?
Me: A lawyer.
G: AHHHH! You want me to be a lawyer when I grow up?*
Me: Why not? They make a lot of money.
G: But I thought I was going to work at Red Lobster and give you free meals every time you come in for dinner.

I can see him standing at a fork in the road. There's a sign in front of him that clearly reads Career Path. To the right is a road that will take him to a life of law. To the left is waiting on tables at Red Lobster. There he stands, day after day, unsure and indecisive. They are, after all, two very good choices.

*I think he still has some kind of lingering fear of attorneys. We spent over a year of his life traveling back and forth to court or on the phone with one lawyer after another concerning the permanent adoption of his brother. I think judges, courts, and attorneys hide in his closet and come out from under his bed at night instead of the normal monsters and boogie men.

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