Sometimes you Just. Want. Them. To. Go. To BED!!! But you should never (Never!) pass up an opportunity to talk to your teenager. Even when you know that tomorrow AM will Not Be Fun as a result.
The Karate Kid boarded the Clue Bus tonight:
Last year he was State Champ in his martial arts division. But as he approached his teens he decided that he was bored in karate class, and didn't really want to go, and, and, and. He hasn't really focused on martial arts in about six months.
So tonight we're talking about this and that and the other thing, and I offhandedly remind him just how gifted he is in martial arts. (He really and truly is, and that's not just Daddy pride.) He gets inspired to get physical. Ignoring the fact that I've told him to go to bed already - twice - I help him stretch (his foot reaches over my head!?!)
He then heads downstairs to work off some energy on the punching bag.
Ten minuntes later he comes back upstairs, red skinned, sweating, in tears. His leg angle is All Wrong! His foot is like This and it should be like That! "I. Can't. Do. Anything!!!" he wails. That's right, kiddo. No matter how gifted you are, if you don't use it, you lose it.
I give him a cool wet washcloth for his face. Send him to bed. A few minutes later, the light is still on. He says needs to listen to some music and write down his goals for the summer.
That's cool by me.