Cheyenne was nonplussed when she first heard she had earned a letter, but once she realized that she was the only kid in the family who had ever received an academic letter her enthusiasm for the award increased. In the West Fargo School District, an academic letter is awarded to freshman if they maintain a GPA of 3.8 or better. Such a GPA is hardwired into Cheyenne’s DNA. She is not pressured at home to be a straight A student – my only requirement for all my kids has been that they try their hardest to do their best work. The other three were never as enamored with the notion of getting to, and staying at, the top of the grade heap. They also did not have the benefit of having three siblings who ranged in age from about 18 to 11 years older than them to help shape their identity.
But make no mistake, as the baby in the group of four she readily touts her brilliance when she needs an equalizer. West Fargo School District awarded her so much more than just a fuzzy letter for a school jacket – they awarded her bragging rights in an arena (in this family unit) where she stands alone. Powerful stuff indeed.
I think the letter is most likely to be wielded with her brother Noah who is the most likely to engage her in a conversation that causes her to use her academic letter as a smack-down. Alas, I know that the kids are not alone in this shift of academic power brokering – I will not escape unscathed. This recognition this will only make my know-it-all teenager that much more sure that she really does know it all. Such is the price of these things. Although, I imagine a teenager who claims to know it all (hence, every teenager), who actually has a bit more potential to actually know it all (Cheyenne) is a preferable state.
The bottom line is – the letter is the reward for all of Cheyenne’s hard work and determination and it is nice to see it recognized. She is a bright and determined young woman and I suspect her future academic endeavors will be more of the same. And make no mistake, now that she knows that she is the only kid in the family who has been honored in this way, she will ride this train as long as possible. I told you she was bright, right?
Day one thousand four hundred and one of the new forty – obla di obla da