Saturday, January 29, 2011


My oldest son has never been one to care about girls.  Eww.  Seriously ick. 

My husband and I like to ask him (insert sing-song teasing voice here) "who's your girlfriend?  anyone in your class you think is cute?  do you Loooove anyone?"

I'm sure our approach defeats the purpose of getting him to confide in us, but I never said we were perfect parents. 

Little girls like him, though.  In kindergarten, I was informed by another mother and his teacher that he had several girlfriends.  Say what??  As it turns out, these little girls had selected him to be their boyfriend; he had no idea.  But no worries, they were broken up now anyway.

Last year, there was a little girl on his soccer team who could not stop touching him.  Seriously.  She jumped on him, and snatched his soccer ball, and slapped his back, and punched his arm and did everything possible to have physical and social contact with him, save from pinning him down and smooching him.  Because THAT would have been obvious, right?

She would yell hello to him in the parking lot; he would run right past her.  She would explain, dreamily, to her friend "that's W, he's in my class." 

So I asked him about it one day.  I was a little embarrassed for her that she tried to say hello to him all the time and he ignored her, so I was chastising him a little for not being a good friend.  Which is mom-speak for you're being rude.

"She's not my friend, Mom."
"Sure she is, she's in your class."
"She hates me." Um, no, I don't think so.
"No she doesn't, don't be ridiculous."
"Uh-huh, she tells me every day."
"Come on.  What does she say?"
"I hate you W." 

Ah, young love.  He's so clueless.  And literal.  God bless him.

A few weeks ago, a little girl from his class called him.  I listened in on the conversation, only to hear "What.  I turned it in.  I already told you.  Why are you calling me.  I told you I did.  What are you talking about.  Why are you still talking about this."  All the while, racing his Mario Cart to the next level.

I tried to get his attention, which only confused him more.  So, I picked up the other line to see if I could get a read on what was going on, so I could prompt him.  "Weeeellll, I wanted to make sure you turned in the book.  Siiiillllyyyyy booooy.  (giggle, giggle, gasp)  I wouldn't want you to get in trouble. (more giggles and flirty laughter)."

Holy moly.  She was crush calling.  I did that with my friends.  BUT NOT WHEN I WAS 9!

"Tell her it's dinner time."
"My mom says to tell you it's dinner time, but it's only 5:00, so I don't know."
"I have to go."
"Now say goodbye, see you tomorrow and hang up."
(To me, without covering the mouthpiece, or even moving his mouth away from it, for that matter) "she won't stop talking."
"GET. OFF. THE. PHONE!"  I'm thinking of all the psychological damage he's caused this poor little girl.

Finally, the never ending call was over. 
"Who was that?"
"I don't know."
"How could you not know, didn't she say her name?"
"Yes, but I forget."
"Well, is she in your class?"
"I think so."

Somewhere out there, a little girl will never recover from the memory of the crush call she made to a little boy who was completely unaware of her existence.  Poor little thing. 

Open letter to her mother, and the mother of soccer girl:  I am sorry.  He doesn't know.  Never was a child more clueless.  One day, my guess is, his feelings will change. 

There IS hope.  For all of us.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


I have yet to have basic anatomy talks with my growing children.  Now that they're 9, 7 and 5, I am aware that this is a conversation we need to have soon, but honestly, the way they love "potty talk" (you know -- poop, fart, barf, penis, etc.) the LAST thing I have wanted to do was introduce new words into their repertoire.  Especially horrifying words like va the "v" word.  So, for now, because they haven't really asked, I am 100% fine having my daughter believe that she just has a plain, old, uncomplicated bottom. 

The other day, my son informed me that he has nibbles.  And though I pretended to feign ignorance, I knew he'd been talking to the little boy down the street. 

"Say what?"
"Nibbles.  And you have them too."
"What are nibbles?"
"You know" (making circles around his, well, his nibbles)
"Oh.  Nipples.  And who told you about nipples?"
"Of course."
"Dad has nibbles too T." That's the 9-year-old chiming in.  Contributing his worldly and vast knowledge of human anatomy.  He IS 9 after all.  He KNOWS things.

I tried to correct them again, but it was too late.  I had lost my lesson to a peal of hoots and hollers and repeated "nibbly nibnibs" among the kids. 

A few days later, the little one cornered me again, this time while we were reading.
"Mom, how come mommies have big boobies?"
"Because, that's how they feed their babies."
"I don't have them, and daddy doesn't have them, because we're boys."
"That's right."
"I have pimples."
"Pimples.  You know.  They have the NIBBLES on them."

Geesh Mom.  Don't you know ANYTHING?

Am I deficient as a mother because I won't go there?  I feel like these are conversations I need to have with them privately, but honestly, no one's seemed interested in knowing more than they already do, so why stir the pot?  Like I said, all I need is for their lexicon to NOW include words like the "v" word and "breasts" (another word I hate...what's wrong with me?). 

When they've outgrown the potty talk, they can know the real words.  Keep 'em little until they're not little any more. 


Monday, January 3, 2011

New Year's Resolutions. And Revelations.

I'm a list maker.  I try very hard to be a list keeper too, but I have to face facts (and those who know me can attest) organization is not my strong suit.  I'm a mess, really, and luckily I can blame it on three children and a husband who's always out of town so I have to do everything myself and I'm totally overwhelmed, but the reality is that I can't really blame anyone.  Or, rather, I shouldn't.  I should say those elements compound what is already a pretty serious problem. 

This morning, I couldn't even finish with coffee preparations because I got distracted by school lunches, then in the middle of that I realized I needed to pay the trash bill, and in the process of looking for stamps I decided to update my address book with new addresses accumulated through this year's holiday cards, and then I realized "oh, the coffee!" So I went back to my original task, only to realize that the lunches were half-made, and that I needed to pen a little note to my daughter's teacher, and oh!  Teachers' gifts, where are they?  But look, here's my new calendar ... why isn't it up on the refrigerator?  Oh, but I need to update it first.  Don't forget the tuition check for T and some paper towels ... a note to pick up paper towels at the store.  Damn, I need to finish the lunches!

So, I'm turning my new year's resolutions into a list to organize my life.  Some are tasks, some are lessons, some are tiny little pep talks to myself.  Hey, whatever works.

  1. Organize.  HA!  I had to throw that one in there.  Still giggling...
  2. Finish.  Anything.  Mostly, projects around the house.  The wall in the bathroom has not painted itself in the four years since I painted the rest of the room.  Chances, are, it's not going to happen now.
  3. Family time.  Find a way to turn the everyday moments into fun family memories.
  4. Faith.  God helps those who help themselves, and He is good.  Very good.  Faith is a partnership.  And the rewards are worth it.
  5. Relish the discovery.  I learned a lot about myself  in 2010.  Some of those lessons were gleaned from heartache, some from triumph, and some from nothing more than ordinariness (probably not a word, but you get it, I think).  I also learned a lot about the people closest to me.  A heartbreaking discovery about my daughter allowed me to discover a new, wonderful relationship with her.  I discovered my son was struggling and I discovered I have the knowledge and expertise to get him what he needs, and fast.  I discovered that people don't change and that relationships that are too much work are not relationships at all.  I discovered who my true friends are.  I discovered a level of friendship I didn't know existed with a friend who was willing to drop everything to rush to my side in a dark hour.  I discovered that my husband is a true partner, as he took over my role as "mother" on many an occasion.  I discovered that I'm a lot stronger than I thought.  I also discovered that my "mother's intuition" is fierce.  
  6. Be present.  In whatever situation.  Especially with my children.  This is going to be hard.  I am easily distracted.  See intro above.
  7. Find fun.  I've let myself become bogged down with responsibilities.  I need to make an effort to rediscover having fun and being silly.  
  8. Write thank you notes in a timely fashion.  It is something that I simply cannot seem to manage, much to my poor mother's chagrin.  Which is proof that the failures of the children are not always the failures of the parents.
  9. Remember that the failures of the children are not always the failures of the parents.
  10. Stand up straight.  It makes me look skinnier and does wonders for my "i carried three watermelon sized things in my belly for close to 3 years" gut.  It also makes me feel stronger, braver and calmer.  Positives all around.  Huh, who knew?
That's it.  If I make too many, I'll lose my focus again.  As it is, I can't remember what #1 was.  Oh, organize!