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May 6, 2017

Lured to the Table

A table is a fine piece of furniture.  In my home, we eat at it, have school at it, make arts and crafts on it, and build with Legos on it.  I confess, our table is also a catch-all.  Mostly it's my pile of school stuff and my computer.  I also have to remind the boys to clear their things off pretty regularly, as well.  Usually a couple of times each day.  "Whose Legos are these?"  "Please take care of your crayons and scissors."  I think many homeschoolers have the same issue.  We're home all day together (except when we aren't!) and there is more free time for the sort of thing that clutters the table.

I'm starting to learn Latin with First Form Latin from Memoria Press.  I already knew one Latin word though, mensa.  Mensa means table.  It's the name of the high IQ society that requires members to score in the 98th percentile or higher on certain allowable exams.  Many years ago, when I was a single mom of one punk and I had zero self-esteem, I splurged on a proctored Mensa exam in Binghamton, NY.

Lo, and behold!  I was accepted into Mensa.  With just a small membership fee, I was awarded a card for my wallet that said I was smart!  Me!  Smart?  Err...  the average student who never did homework.  The "secretary" with an Associates in business administration.  When my friends and family (the few I told) found out, no one congratulated me.  They all said, "If Jodi can be in Mensa, I'm sure I can be, too."  Seriously.  Everyone's first thought was that surely they were smarter than me.  I'm not book smart.  I'm not street smart.  But I have "intelligence." 

Are most Mensans important people?  Don't they all do important work?  I don't know because I've only met a few people I knew were Mensans.  I coordinated activities for my region for a while and no one attended them.  Turns out many Mensans aren't especially sociable.

A friend of mine is a neuro-biology professor at a university.  Is she a Mensan?  I don't think so.  She used to date a Mensan, though.  He was a jerk.  Anyway, my friend liked to "test" her students in Psych 101 with a "guess the Mensan" quiz.  I was an example.  The underachieving, single mom of one who became a stay at home mom of several,   I used to think it was funny.  Now, I'm not so sure.

God gave me a brain.  It's not an Einstein brain, but it's a good brain.  What have I done with it?  Not much.  I don't think I even really have an aptitude for anything.  My husband is "wicked smaht" as they say in these parts,  Or do they?  Anyway, he is book smart, movie quote smart, gEEk smart, and trivia smart.  He's so smart, he never joined Mensa (though he could because his IQ is smarter than mine).

I went to that Mensa exam because I wanted some validation in my life.  I paid for that Mensa card because it reminded me every time I saw it that I wasn't a total waste.  Eventually, I decided I didn't need to spend $XX for that smart declaring card every year, and I don't anymore.  Knowing that I'm Mensa smart used to be a comfort in some odd way.  But now?  Now I want to figure out what I can do with these smarts.  Was I given them for a reason?  How do I figure this all out?


annette @ A net in time said...

how do you figure out what to do with your smarts? That is so hard to answer...

what are your dreams? Your loves? your desires? If you sit back with your eyes closed what do you imagine.

I do want to encourage you ARE already using your brains. Teaching and helping your youngsters. Sowing seeds of learning enjoyment. Helping them to see beyond themselves, into the bigger picture. Those aren't bits of nothing you know? They really aren't.

zekesmom10 said...

Thank you for the encouragement, Annette. I guess I still want that validation, not so much that I'm "smart" anymore, but maybe that I've done something with it.

Christy of The Travel Bags said...

Excellent point--it's not what we have, but what we do with what we have that matters.

Kym Thorpe said...

I completely understand wanting to have some kind of validation. I know I'm "smart" and "intelligent" but I don't have a degree and sometimes I wish I did. But as homeschoolers, I think we are using the intelligence God gave us in a very important way. I think I'd rather keep on inviting others to the table/mensa to be fascinated by all that we can learn than to have a Mensa card that might make me think I'm entitled to a table by myself. :-D

Rodna James said...

Teaching your children is using your brain plenty!!