Say it with me now: “The universe’ most favorite building material is irony.”
This past week, there was a bit of an upset as the oldest nephew of the first ex (draw a diagram, it’s easier) found himself in a spot of serious trouble and without anywhere to go. I had to bail out of a lunch date to investigate the problem, and by the end of the night, I had an extra kid.
This is not just any kid, mind you: this is a 16-year-old high school student in choir with the kind of “rough life” that would lead many a lesser mortal into a whole path of not-so-greatness, and yet the universe has seen fit to place him with me while his mother (hopefully) gets her shit together.
We’ve had many interesting conversations over the past few days. Mostly, it’s been a discussion of the rules: Don’t cuss (around the two younger boys). Mistakes happen, just ‘fess up to it, don’t lie about it, and we’ll figure out what to learn from it and how to fix it. Family is family, and family takes care of its own – but family is often the people you choose, the people who choose you, moreso than any tie of blood.
For the next couple of weeks, however, the nephew will be out of school for winter break. This is going to get very, very interesting. Thank the GODS that I broke down and got an Xbox. *whew*
ETA: Also one of the most important rules that we instituted was that he play some video games every day, no exceptions. That was met with surprise, delight and a little suspicion, so I explained about the emotional needs that it satisfied for him, and I think that’s when he really started to realize that this wasn’t just a couch to sleep on but a more serious path to the future. I just hope I can do right by him and make it work right for him.