Generations Day Care Part Five The Balance
It was another Wednesday and we had just gotten out of the pool. By now the kids were mostly use to me and the rec center routine was much smoother. But we had a new boy and his temper was anything but routine or smooth.
"You two guys go wait outside." I told the others as eight year-old Joey got dressed after being told the fifteenth time.
"I'm gonna get my brother to beat you up." Joey yelled as I lead him to the bench and told him again to get dressed. His threats were meaningless to me and his temper tantrums were always short lived. Though he could be a bit pushy with the other children he wasn't violent enough to kick out of the summer camp.
As time went on and as Joey began to trust me the incidents became fewer. By the second and third visits to the rec center he was getting showered and dressed without constant reminders and prompts. Although I still had to get between him and the others on occasion, Joey and I were forming enough of a rapport that he was at least happy enough to see me when I showed up for work.
Later that day at lunch Larissa and the other girls were sitting at a table.
"Nate, are you a kid?" She asked.
They often asked me that along with a dozen other questions like if I had a car, did I still go to school, etc. Even though I was only sixteen to them I was just as much an adult as Sarah and Amanda, the other teachers in the camp.
"No, he's a teenager," Chelsea piped up with authority.
"Actually you're both right," I told them smiling. "I'm a teenager, but I'll be a big kid all my life."
That was pretty much my MO the entire summer. I was firm when I had to be but I never forgot to have fun with the kids, which is why I was there in the first place.