I picked up this week's issue of the town newspaper. There, in a large picture on the front page, is the cast of our high school's One Act play. They are going to State competition for their performance of "Pagaent Play". And in that picture, in the back row, is my son. Mr. Well-Rounded really lives up to his name. He is a musician (both vocal and instrumental), an actor, an athlete, an honor student, a class cabinet member, speaks four languages, a church youth group leader, a worship leader, and a really nice (and good looking) young man. Sounds like I'm bragging? Not intentionally, for there is another motivation behind this post. Mr. Well Rounded has a packed resume from high school. His picture has been in the paper for a wide variety of things (he played soccer, he got into an exclusive music program at a private music school in the cities, etc). He does not lack for positive references. But he is not the youngest in this family. You see, there is one who always seems to feel as though she is living in his shadow. Miss Bookworm is her name and I wish I could make her see that she is not her brother, but she is still loved as much as he is. Her picture has been in the paper one time...when she was inducted into the Tri-M music honor society as a freshman. Mr. Well-Rounded didn't get in to that until he was a sophomore. She forgets that and still feels inferior. She is not an athlete. That is ok. She is a musician (vocal but was a gifted violinist until she gave that up to sing) and she is quite good at singing. She is not a straight A student. That is ok too. She is a hard worker and is usually quite conscientious about her work. She is homeschooled. I wanted to send her to the high school full time next year. Nothing against having her home. I just don't feel as though I am doing a good job of teaching high school. There were many tears at the mention of this potentiality. She goes for choir. I know she would adjust just fine. There is adamant refusal to go. Then, as I was browsing the paper, reading the article on the One Act cast and coming across the pictures on concert choir and concert band (yes, the two highest levels in our school) and seeing Mr. Well-Rounded smiling from those pictures as well...reading the article on what an honor both of these groups had in being selected to perform at the state's music teacher's convention...it dawned on me. I don't think I would want to be the younger sibling of Mr. Well-Rounded either. He is known by every teacher in every department and liked by all of them. And while she shouldn't have to follow in his shoes, it would probably be expected of her simply because her last name matches his. Even Miss Musicmaker, who has a list of accomplishments all her own, said that she would NOT want to be Mr. Well-Rounded's younger sister.
I am proud of both of them. In my eyes, they are both precious gifts from God. Because God has bestowed more on one does not diminish the other in my mind. Convincing Miss Bookworm of that, though...well, that is a different story.