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momwork, part 2

paul's homeroom teacher asked the parents to write letters to her about our kids.

i joked to cam about sending her the essay i wrote. he was horrified.

this is what i eventually decided to submit, and for reasons i'm not entirely sure of, this was damned hard to write:

Dear Mrs. XXXX,

My son Paul [insert last name] is in your class. At 8 (soon to be 9), he's a slight child, all big brown eyes and skinny limbs and shaggy dark hair. Mr. XXXX saw Paul's father at Back-to-School Night and noted a resemblance, but usually people say that he looks more like me.

Paul has severe food allergies to dairy and milk. Even the tiniest exposure can result in a bad reaction. We're in the process of getting his paperwork completed to keep an EpiPen in the nurse's office. If there is any reason to have food in the classroom (birthdays, snacks, experiments), please let us know and we'll make sure Paul has something comparable. He's had these allergies all of his life, so he knows to avoid his triggers and to tell someone as soon as possible if he's been exposed to them. He'll be going in for a skin test soon to determine if his reactions have changed in intensity over the last few years. He has already outgrown an allergy to wheat, so I'm optimistic. Aside from his allergies, his health is excellent. His eyes are perfect. But he's a bit of a hypochondriac, partially because of the special treatment he's always received because of his allergies, and partially because his primary day care has always been provided by grandparents with hypochondriac tendencies themselves.

He loves to read, but hates documenting it. He enjoys challenges and learning new things, but doesn't like doing the back-up work to reinforce what he's learned. For the first two years of school, he complained that his last name was too long to write. Then one day it just stopped bothering him. I'm hoping that he'll eventually get to that point with homework.

Paul is not a fan of math. He prefers science. He likes experiments. As a younger child, he had really specific interests/obsessions and focused exclusively on them--he loved spiders, tornadoes, and military history. He could converse quite intelligently on these topics with adults. I occasionally wondered how I ended up with such an old souled child. Over the last few years, though, he has mellowed considerably. I don't know if it was the influence of other kids or tv or the internet, but he went through a heavy Beyblade phase recently, and is now obsessed with Minecraft and "Gravity Falls." He occasionally asks to watch "Psych." He's happiest with an Apple device in hand.

He has a little sister, Nola. She's four. No one in the entire world loves him as much as she does, even when he is torturing her as big brothers do. She'll be starting preschool in a week in XXXX, and we're expecting her to attend kindergarten at XXXX next year. This is the beginning of his third year here (he spent kindergarten and first grade at XXXX), so he'll be well prepared to show her around.

If you have any questions about Paul or if there is anything you need us to do (or think we should be doing), please feel free to let us know. We look forward to working with you and Mr. XXXX.

seems innocuous enough. why so hard to write?

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