Smell My Teeth

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A brief three weeks into school, and Jake has settled into a rhythm. 

His externship at Katahdin Kritters is going very well.  At first, the thought of tending to so many dogs was a real turn off because, spoiler alert – they poop and it smells.  He’s adapted quickly.  Yesterday he told me that taking good care of 37 dogs is hard, but he can do it. 

It only took a single missed class (he presented to study hall while he was supposed to be in band) for him to get the block schedule straightened out.  Now he knows which days are which like a boss.  He can’t wait to get into “work” early to do his kitchen duties.  He helps distribute the free breakfast to the students.  

Just the other morning I was in the dining room folding some laundry when Jake popped in and announced that he’d not only packed his bag, he had taken his brave pill and, by way of sticking his armpit in my face, was telling me that he’d even remembered deodorant.  What’s next, I asked, are you going to tell me you remembered to brush your teeth, too?  Blank stare.  “I’m working on it!” he shouted as he passed me by.  A few minutes later I was greeted by a great big smile and the order to “smell my teeth!”  This kid. 

I can’t seem to make any headway with him selecting outfits that go together.  His go-to is basketball shorts and whatever shirt is on top in his bureau.  A baggy t-shirt, shorts, dark socks and slip on casual shoes (he hates laces) is typical.  You have to pick your battles though, right?

He is very proud of his ability to get his homework done in study hall, so that he doesn’t have to bring any home.  It’s his single greatest accomplishment each day – having no homework. 

Every day after school when I ask how his day went, he says, “It was awesome!  I had a great day.”  I can’t ask for anything more than that. 

Look at that smile!


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