It’s four months past my goal date. Spent 3 months trying to create the hardcover. Finally hired a Fiverr artist to collate my art and the template. Took her one day. 😛
The sun started to go down and they headed home.
“Want to work on the rainforest project tomorrow after school?” Lily asked.
“Yes! That’ll be fun!”
After eating dinner, Kevin worked on his homework. He didn’t even think of his channel, subscriptions, likes, or dislikes.
Focusing on his math, he understood it and completed all of his homework. Fatigued, he fell into an easy, deep sleep.
“And look over here!” Lily motioned him over.
There, lying in the grass, was a baby elephant napping in the grass.
They reached the creek. The sky was blue, the air was crisp, and birds were singing in the trees.
“Kevin, come, look.”
He peered into the water. There were tadpoles in the creek..
Kevin’s spirits lifted and he felt excited again.
Well?” Kevin pushed.
Lily put her food down.
“You might start with asking yourself why the opinion of strangers means so much more to you than your own opinion of yourself.”
Kevin was speechless.
Kevin joined Lily for lunch at her house. They ate in silence until…
“Nothing’s going right,” Kevin moaned.
Lily waited for him to continue.
“My grades are in the toilet, my YouTube channel is in the toilet and I am in the toilet!”
Lily looked him in the eyes and listened.
Kevin wanted her to say something, but he realized that there was nothing for her to say.
“What do you think I should do?”
“Are you feeling Ok?” asked Mr. Dennis.
“No, not really,” Kevin replied weakly.
“You didn’t do well on the test, Kevin. That’s not like you.”
“I know and I feel terrible. I didn’t study. I really messed up.”
Edgy from lack of sleep, low in energy from poor diet, and frustrated with himself, Kevin sulked.
Lily realized Kevin just wanted to pout and work on his channel, so she went home.
For the next few hours, Kevin watched YouTube tutorials on how to record himself playing video games. Then he had to learn how to play one. Finally, he recorded himself playing the video game and posted it. Anxiously, he checked the number of his subscribers, likes, and dislikes.
Three followers! He gained two! But he also had only 3 likes and ten dislikes.
It was late, but he wasn’t sleepy. What to do? How to get people to like his channel and subscribe? He laid in bed thinking and thinking. He fell asleep only to wake suddenly in the middle of the night.
He forgot to study.
He refreshed again. He sighed.
“OK, I have one like and one dislike. Five views. No subscribers.”
“C’mon, Kevin. Let’s work on the rainforest. Check it later.” Lily moved on to the sloths. Sloths are so cute, she thought.
Kevin felt sick to his stomach. He felt humiliated, sad, and out of control. His heart was beating out of his little chest – he had to do something. But what?
As he molded the toucans, his mind was on his channel. Why don’t people like me?
“What now? Want to work on our rainforest project?” Lily asked.
“Um, OK,” Kevin said distractedly.
As Lily worked on the insects, Kevin refreshed his YouTube page. Lily could see Kevin was stressed. He was turning red.
“Look! Look! I have 4 views!”
Lily looked at his screen. Indeed, there were four views. Kevin refreshed.
“What? One dislike?! A thumbs down?”
Lily went back to her insect-making. “Our video was great. Ignore the dislikes.”
“Ignore? How can I ignore that? I don’t even have any likes!” Kevin wondered how the other three views garnered no reaction.