Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tired Tuesday, After A Day of Changes

I have no idea why, but I'm completely wiped today. I think it's my impending "womanly time" that's making me feel like I've been scraped off the asphalt after being nailed by a Mack truck.

I think it also has something to do with my mother, who's been very clingy and needy lately, and is acting like a fourth child. It's a long story, but the moral of it is that it's never a good thing.

But, I'm doing my fair best to plow through it, getting the mounds of laundry done that I need to (I swear my laundry breeds like rabbits in our hamper while we're asleep!), and cleaning up around here, so it doesn't look like who did it and ran.

My son has it made this summer. I wish, for at least a few days, I could switch places with him. I sent up my oldest daughter to go rouse him out of bed... after all, it WAS 1:30 in the afternoon! It's partly my fault, though... I didn't have her hightail it upstairs at, oh, say 9:30 to get him up and at 'em. And I KNEW he'd be pulling a late-nighter after we took a run to K-Mart so he could buy a new headset for his 360. I'm sure he and all of his dueling buddies (his "clan", as he calls them) were up until the wee small hours of the morning. Demolishing evil forces, and saving mankind are hard work, after all.

On the ride there, I had him call one of his best buds, to see if he'd like to tag along. I figured that we'd be driving right by his house anyway, so maybe they'd like to hang out and act like goofy teenagers together. Here's the gist of the conversation:

N: "Hey"
(to which his friend must have replied "hey" back. So profound, aren't they?)
N: "My mom's taking me to K-Mart to buy a new headset. Wanna come?"
(to which, I believe his friend joked with my son about his blatant stupidity on breaking his old headset in the first place.)
N, to me: "Corey says you're a good mom for taking me."
Me: "Yeah, especially when you were such a nimrod for getting your plug stuck in the thing in the first place!"
N: (Repeats what I said to his friend, then shouts) "And DON'T respond the way I think you're going to respond! Okay, see ya. 'Bye."

At that point he turned to me and said something so completely off-balance that it took all I had to keep from turning the car off the road.

"In case you're wondering, I was expecting Corey to say, 'That's what she said' as his response. That's why I told him not to say it."

I had to catch my breath for a minute, and really remember that this was a young man I was talking to... not my powered butt, sweet cheeked little baby with his face full of dimples and that humungus, goofy, toothless grin. I turned to him and said, "I don't want you thinking those kinds of things... you're too young." His response made me white-knuckle the steering wheel even tighter.

"Too late, Mom. I already do."

I so felt like someone punched me in the gut and knocked the wind right out of me, that I tried to control the tone of my voice, so it didn't come out as a high pitched squeal when I spoke. I said, "Well, I suppose you are old enough to have lustful thoughts about girls. But, you're way too young to ACT on any of them just yet."

"I know, Mom!" he said, all embarrassed. Which was a good sign.

I have to say, I'm really proud of myself with the way I handled that conversation! :)

Earlier in the day yesterday, I took my oldest daughter and my son to the Club to hang out for a bit. I got tired of seeing both of them wandering aimlessly around the house. My daughter squealed with delight when I told her to go put her bathing suit on; that she could go to free swim, as well. She LOVES playing in the pool, and it was so stifling out yesterday that I figured it would be a good thing for her to do.

I pulled up to the front of the Club, and my daughter bounded out of the car, with her $2.00 for her snack and drink in one hand, and her membership card in the other. She said to me, "Mom, can you wait one minute? I think I just saw my new friend, and I want you to meet her." What??? Did she say her???? You have to understand...my daughter is a self-proclaimed, all-encompassing, bonafide tomboy. I think it came as a package deal, seeing as how she and my son were each other's constant playmates for the first six or seven years of my oldest daughter's life. She wants NOTHING to do with anything pink or pretty. There are no Barbies within a 10-mile radius of her room. She's all about Pokemon, and Power Rangers, and Transformers, and messed up hair hanging all in her face, and playing in dirt, and digging up worms, and wearing the most mis-matched outfits she can find, and climbing trees, and roughhousing, and hanging out with BOYS.

So, to have her even suggest that she's befriended a girl... well, that's definitely a recent development! She brought her friend over to the car to say hi, and I thought she was as cute as a button. A little shy, but friendly enough to be willing to make small talk with me. After a brief bit of politeness, they scampered off together, hand in hand, and I could hear my daughter saying, "C'mon... my mom is letting me go to free swim today...let's go play in the pool!", and a pang hit my heart so hard, that I didn't really expect it.

I wondered how long it would take before she'd go running off hand in hand with a boy instead, saying "My Mom said I could stay out until 11:00"? It was just one of those trajectory thoughts that passes through almost every mom's brains, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. My tomgirl is starting to change, both in physical appearance, and in her preference in style and interests. She's getting more into clothes. She's starting to care about what her hair looks like. And she's hanging out with GIRLS, who are inevitably going to rub off on her. I shudder at the thought.

I'll tell you one thing. If I have to bypass the boy section in a toy store, and head straight for the Barbie aisle whenever I'm out with her, then I'll know I'm in BIG trouble.


Don said...

Ya know... I'm not quite sure what I would have done in your situation. And seeing that I don't have kids... well, that makes it that much more difficult.

But I will say this. "Education" is happening at a younger and younger age these days (great, I sound like an old man!) But one thing I'm grateful for are parents that were not afraid to have open conversations about taboo topics. I think there is something to be said when children feel comfortable talking with their parents about such topics. I mean... if you're not willing to talk about "it", then I'm sure they'll find someone who will.

Education begins in the home. I've come to believe that if you teach a child good principles at a young age, they are more likely to follow that through the rest of their life.

...but that's just My Opinion. :)

You're the momma!

Mama C. said...

Thanks for the affirmation, Don. It makes me feel so much better to know that maybe, just maybe, I'm not screwing him up royally! :) I'm just so incredibly grateful that it was nighttime, and therefore pitch black inside the car. That way, he didn't see how crimson red my cheeks had flushed!

I've been really open with my kids about pretty much everything since they were little little. Mostly because I was NEVER properly "taught" such things, and conversations about anything to do with "the facts of life" were completely taboo in my house growing up. I had to learn from outside sources, and was completely naive about a LOT of things. I just thank goodness I had a sister-in-law who was willing to take me aside and set me straight, before I got into BIG trouble!

I'll tell you one thing... the best teaching tool I could have possibly asked for was getting pregnant with my littlest little. I had many, MANY discussions with my two children about where the baby was growing in my body, what she was looking like at that moment in time, and how everything was changing and feeling as her growth progressed. I spent many nights curled up on my bed with my oldest daughter, who BEGGED me to look through a couple of books I had, containing 3-D images of babies in utero. She was simply fascinated by them. Between that, and CONSTANTLY talking to the baby in my belly, I think she learned quite a lot for a youngin'.

And... it was the neatest thing to see this teeny tiny being, turning her head in recognition when her newly acquired big sister entered the hospital room, came over to the two of us, and began softly talking to her, as if she were continuing the conversation she'd started while her baby sister was inside of me. Just thinking about that beautiful moment brings tears to my eyes!

Sorry... being WAAAAYYYY too reflective tonight, I guess. Didn't mean to ramble.

Anyway, thanks again for your thoughts. They really do mean a lot.

Tell me this, now that I've got you offering "opinions".... about what age did you start shaving (and, based on your previous post, I guess I should clarify that I mean your FACE! :). The boy is starting to amass quite a bit of hair, especially on the sides of his face (below his sideburns), and I'm wondering when regular shaving should begin?

My husband is rendered useless with this information, 'cause he just grew his beard in as soon his facial hair grew in enough, and he's basically had one ever since.

So again.... help!!! :)

Final score:Boys 5 Girls 0 said...

These darn boys are thinking things that are way to mature for their age...and then that makes us age at the same time...Help!! I can't stand it! I have a funny email for you...I will go send it..you will enjoy it!

Karyn said...

I think it shows how much your son trusts you that he was comfortable talking that much to you.

How old is your daughter? My youngest sister has had girlfriends for three years now, til then she was a tomboy thru and thru. And the liking boys comes really fast when they do that.

erica said...

Just from another mom's view... if he's starting to get whiskery, and he may get made fun of... no harm in teaching him how to shave. (show the clip from the movie "My Life" when he demonstrates the two schools of shaving, up or down.. never sideways!"

Kudo's on tackling that growing up moment. Makes me scared a bit my boys growing up. hopefully I can handle it as good as you!

Don said...

ha ha ha...

First time I picked up a razor was when I was 12 years old. No lie. I didn't shave more than once every 2 weeks, but it was fun. And, it makes you feel more like a man... for what it's worth. :)

Mama C. said...

Natalie -- that's EXACTLY what I thought! HE'S WAY TOO YOUNG!! But, I guess with all that facial (and armpit)hair comes other "surges" brought on by hormones. Sigh.

Karyn -- Thanks for the sweet compliment. I really hope all of my children always feel that they can come and talk to me about anything. I'll just do my fair best to hold it together until they're out of my range of sight. Then I'll fall to the ground in a heap, and assume the fetal position.

My oldest daughter is 9 (she'll be 10 at the end of December). I don't want to hear that the switch from boy to girl playmates means crushes aren't far behind ::lalalalala...I can't hear you!....lalalalala!::

Erica -- Point well taken. He's not SO "whiskery" that he looks like he needed a good shave about a month ago (there was actually a boy that graduated from middle school with him that had a FULL beard and mustache already! YIKES!), and I think the newly developed hair is bothering me much more than it's bothering him. I guess I'll have to talk to him about it, and see how he feels. I'll definitely keep that movie in mind, though! :)

Don -- Twelve? TWELVE????? You CAN'T be serious? That's about six months past babyhood, if you ask me! That's 'cause you've got that Mediterranean look about you, with the dark hair. As part of my Greek background, I have the same thick, dark hair, too. I was shaving my legs by the time I was 11 (and doing a VERY poor job of it, I might add!).

But, I don't know. Boys shaving their facial hair seems to be much more of a rite of passage than girls shaving their legs, for exactly the reason you said... it makes you guys feel more like a "man". I shaved my legs 'cause I was tired of my stockings sticking to the hair!

Guess I'll have to talk to the boy and see how he feels about starting. And then I'll stop at Blockbuster and pray they have that movie!

erica said...

warning, it's a tear jerker movie. I wonder if they have the clip on YouTube. :D

(I LOVE how 12 years old is just 6 months past babyhood!! It probably seems that way based on just how fleeting 4 1/2 years has been...seems I was just holding the hpt with shaking hands showing it to my hubby.)

erica said...


movie trailer, does show the clip I was speaking of though. Still searching.

erica said...

well, can't find a different clip with it in there.

The movie is good, but very very sad. You'll want a box of kleenix. (My husband says its way too sad to watch. But I say tear jerkers ca be good.)

Mama C. said...

Now that I've watched that trailer, I know exactly which movie you're talking about. I actually saw it, a LOOOONGGGG time ago (I adore Michael Keaton!); so long ago that I don't remember the details of it -- only the major premise.

I will see if I can hunt a copy down soon, but not this week. My hormones are raging right now, and Verizon commercials turn me into a heaping puddle of sap! :)

Thanks for the good looking out, though, sweetie!

Susy said...

I am going through the same stuff with Ryan. He wants to know everything and we are much better at explaining it then Zack down the street. We are like Don's parents "TABOO" subject are spoken about pretty freely. Of course we are mindful about there ages. I have a bit of a bohemian spirit about me, so I am very open about a lot of things and believe that if you don't include yourself in your children's life they will exclude you when they realize they can!.

Enjoyed this fishbowl of thoughts from all!

Agree with your "Opinions"

Karyn said...

Don't worry about your daughter liking boys too fast... it won't happen for a few years I think. My mom once said after girls start being horse crazy it's not far behind.

Karyn said...

and oh yeah, even with a good principles being taught, if the child goes astray from them, they'll come back because of it.

erica said...

if you can't find it, I can send you my copy. It's VHS.