Letter to that smart person with smart kids

by Courtney on June 24, 2011

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Before anyone gets all paranoid, know that this goes for all ridiculously intelligent people with intelligent children. And know that I have astronomical standards for what constitutes plain ‘ol intelligent, much less ridiculously intelligent, so by nature, very few qualify. But if you do…

I’m watching you. I’m making note of your every move. I’m listening to what other people are saying about you. I want to observe you so that I can do what you did to get your child where he is now, which, I might add, is quite impressive. I’m getting all CIA on you. I’m sniffing around about your past, your kid’s past, about how you handled bed-wetting during the preschool years, and what you said when you found purple crayon on the new white furniture.

No, I’m not stalking. I just need some positive influences among all of the garbage that has become so commonplace. Give me a break here. I am trying to raise a child in a society that prays to the retail gods, a society that admires a woman who looks like she’s smuggling bowling balls in her t-shirt, a society that sees nothing wrong with hanging back and taking credit for another group’s accomplishments (I’m talking about pro sports).

Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with cheering on your favorite team. But for the love of Nutella, don’t say we. You ate chips and drank beer while a bunch of guys put in the sweat to accomplish whatever it was you’re patting yourself on the back for.

Just a peeve of mine.

Okay, back to my cry for help.


I mean, how is he supposed to become a chaos theorist and dead language hobbyist if he’s got a head full of bread?

You can’t blame me for taking notes on the geniuses of the world. Whatever I’m doing isn’t working. I’m like, oh no, you just put bread in your ear. Wait, Mommy’s getting her camera. Smile! Now, we don’t put bread in our ears…

(I know, I know, mixed messages. But some moments are too cute not to capture with the old point-and-shoot.)

I’m just trying to find the model parents and children out there who aren’t so much interested in the bowling balls and touchdowns (okay, I’ll take mildly amused). Is it too much to ask to want my child to want to exercise the noggin as a matter of priority?

So, the moral of the story is, I’m seeking out the people who get it so that I can get it too.

For the record, this doesn’t even scratch the surface of the parenting pressure I put on myself. Time to lighten up, perhaps?

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Courtney (17 Posts)

Courtney Sperlazza, MPH, has worked in health research and is currently a write-at-home mom to two of the most beautiful and charming kids on the planet. Her most recent project is baby number 3, due early October. If you liked what you read, you can find her blogging about parenting, homeschooling, winemaking and more at Project Courtney.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Kim Senne June 24, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Thank you for saying what I’ve been thinking since my son was born. 🙂


Desiree June 24, 2011 at 2:39 pm

He’s 2…relax 😛 Besides…I think some of the intelligence is due to genetics. Good thing I picked an intelligent husband :p


Courtney Sperlazza June 24, 2011 at 3:24 pm

And based on the fact that you read attachment parenting stuff, I’d call you very intelligent too! But I’m biased 😉


Matt June 24, 2011 at 8:16 pm

I love your post. I highly recommend the Read Aloud Book….http://www.trelease-on-reading.com/


Lisa June 24, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Grin. This could be me, I think, just overthinking everything. Good luck raising your genius!


Courtney Sperlazza June 25, 2011 at 8:01 am

I just noticed that Bringing Up Geeks is on your blog “bookshelf.” I’ve been meaning to get my hands on a copy! I’d ask you how you like it, but if you featured it, I think I can guess at the answer…


MaMammalia June 25, 2011 at 1:54 pm

What a laugh! This morning I found myself saying “You put your toothbrush in the air filter…again?!” I think part of genius is experimentation and all good research requires repetition. So, bread in the ear…pretty darn creative!


Rita June 27, 2011 at 5:41 pm

LOL! I love this post. So funny. Seriously, tho, don’t we all feel like this sometimes? Or, maybe, more times than not?


Mothering From The Maelstrom June 29, 2011 at 6:56 am

Read my response to your blog here (it’s too long for the comments section lol) –> http://motheringfromthemaelstrom.blogspot.com/2011/06/letter-from-this-smart-person-with.html


Marcia June 29, 2011 at 11:39 pm

From a smart person (as I’d guess you are) with a ridiculously smart child, now adult: Sesame Street taught her to recognize the entire alphabet by 20 months. Now that’s humbling. Sure I read to her, but it was quite by accident that I made this discovery.
In my opinion, the tougher row to hoe would be the retail gods, the influx of sexuality not at all subtly in child dance classes and movies, and the seduction of the celebrity life and all it’s dysfunction. Heck, if you’re privy to that, your kids are way ahead of the game.


Debbie July 6, 2011 at 12:17 pm

it’s hard to strike a balance between turning them into geeks with no social skills and letting them become brainless mediocre members of society. But, genetics is a powerful force so you can only influence so much anyway. Especially after hormones hit.


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