Tonight I told him that even though I was not surprised, that I was very proud of him.
His immediate response? "Sweet! What present do I get?" (Don't ask where this little gem came from - seriously, don't ask).
So I say to him, "Actually, you get two things."
He looks genuinely surprised for a moment - he knows me better than that. So I say to him, "The first thing you get is a feeling of self worth . . . "
"Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh, yeah let me guess - the second one is your respect." He knew this one was coming, I can tell by the way his eyes nearly roll back into his skull.
"Yep - and I don't just give that stuff away."
He's a pretty good natured kid. He takes the report card back and just grins at his stupid mother.
I lean my elbows on the table so I can get a good look into his eyes when I ask this next question. "Dude, can you honestly say that if I bought you something, that this would be a bigger accomplishment? If I bought you something, would you feel better about yourself?"
He does not miss a beat when he leans in, smiles and says, "Absolutely not. I'd just feel better about you."