Son irritatingly successful with impulses

Sunday, December 5, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 2:31 a.m. CDT, Thursday, July 3, 2008

I have written many times about our seven children. All of them are pretty normal except one — our middle son. I don’t know how to describe him other than he is unique. I don’t use that word lightly because it means one of a kind, and very few things in life fit that definition. My son does.

He was delivered while I was under hypnosis, and I don’t think he’s ever come out of the spell.

As a baby, he wasn’t much of a cuddler. He wanted to be up and going. He started walking at 10 months, which after two weeks became a run — and he hasn’t stopped since.

Being the middle child, he was pretty much ignored. He brought home average grades and was never in trouble. High school, however, was another matter. I think he holds the record for the most recorded D’s. I queried his teachers, and they all said the same thing. He never even brought paper to class. Dismayed, my husband and I had him tested at a learning center. He scored genius! The tester said our son was bored in school. I helped him get over this boredom by taking away all TV. The result was more D’s.

It took one semester of college to see that our son wasn’t ready. How can anyone get a D in tap dancing? We gave him four choices — Army, Navy, Air Force or Marines. He chose the Army. Three years later went back to school to get his degree.

His life became a roller coaster, changing jobs with the season. Then he met his future wife and within weeks he had settled down.

The couple and their two kids don’t live in Columbia, and that is a good thing. My son continues to be the most unpredictable of all of our children. Whenever someone asks me what he’s doing, I always reply, “What day is it?”

He has a great job; that’s not the problem. It’s his compulsiveness that drives everyone crazy.

He decided that he needed to lose weight. He called and made the announcement and I, being the authority on weight loss (for others), began my sermon on how to proceed — taking it slow, cutting down on calories, eating less fat-filled foods and daily exercise.

“Yeah, fine, Mother.” He has always been the impatient type. “I’m just going to stop eating and drink shakes.”

I chuckled remembering my shake diet. The result was a 10 pound gain in less than two weeks.

Six weeks later he came to town 40 pounds lighter.

Another time he was in the process of buying a house to fix up and sell. He said it was his new hobby.

“If you get a real-estate license, you wouldn’t have to pay 6 percent to someone else,” I said in passing.

Two weeks later, he called.

“I just got my real-estate license,” he said proudly.

“Don’t be ridiculous,” I said. “It takes weeks to get a license.”

“Not if you take the class online,” he said. “I just took the exam 10 minutes ago, and I passed.”

Then there was the time he called to say that he wanted a flying lesson on video for Christmas.

Being a good mother — and not being able to come up with something else — I complied.

Less than a month later he called and asked if I’d pick him up at the airport. He wanted to show me his new airplane.

“Have you taken lessons?” I asked with a gasp.

“I learned enough with the videos to get the basics,” he said. “You have to have your own plane to learn the other stuff.”

“Son, most people rent a plane; they don’t buy one!”

I could go on and on with stories about this kid. His son recently mentioned that he would like a tree house someday. The next week he climbed the ladder to a two-story bungalow.

Our son hasn’t had a project for at least a month, so I wasn’t surprised when he called last week.

“I’m going to write a book,” he said.

Now he was getting on my nerves. I have wanted to write a book, I even have a story line, but never seemed to have the time to get started.

“I have the title, written an outline and have the first chapter completed,” he said.

“I suppose you want me to edit it,” I said smugly.

“No, I don’t want you to ruin it,” he replied. “I just thought you’d like to read it.”

I did. It’s good. Sigh.

If you have a comment or want to adopt our son, please e-mail me at

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