Winner!

I played a game of chess with L the other day and… I won! Checkmate! Woooooo hooooooo! He looked incredulous (appropriate, as I can’t beat him).

I recounted my victory during our annual Super Bowl party and all of the adults said, “way to go. You’re showing off about beating your second grader at chess? You are awesome. Get some help.”

Gotta laugh. Especially at myself. (L did not lose graciously or gracefully.)

Next: Losing.

Surprise?

I arranged for L to take a swimming evaluation and start private lessons. My error? I did all of this a couple of days ago and somehow forgot to tell him.

M: “L, we’re going to go swimming today! Woo hoo!”

L: “What do you mean?”

M: “We’re (I’m using the royal WE) going to a great, heated pool and are going to see where you are and then start lessons.”

L: “WHAT?! I’ve been taking lessons at school for three years.”

M: “Yes, and they just concluded, so now you get to have cool, individual lessons.”

L: “Why didn’t you tell me? What if I drown? What if I’m not good enough? Mom, this is the kind of thing I need to prepare for. I need to have enough time to mentally get myself ready. You can’t just spring this on me. This is becoming a problem. You sign me up for things but you don’t ask me and you don’t give me enough notice. This doesn’t work for me. Who knows if these people can really swim? If I’ll be supervised? Do you want me at the bottom of the pool?”

M: “Got it. Discuss then act.”

What the F?

Yesterday as I was chopping some veggies for dinner, I nicked my finger and let out an F-bomb.

L: “Mom, I think it would be more appropriate for you to stop using that sort of language. If you’re telling me not to use it, I think you should stop using it. You’re sending a confusing message.”

M:

L: “Do you think you can stop using that sort of language? Because you’re sort of telling me it’s okay. And I know it’s not.”

M: (DREAM SEQUENCE: You betcha, I will not say s–t, f–k, a–h–e, d-bag, d–k wad, h–l to the no. I will abstain from such language.)

M: “Got it. No more potty mouth.”

L: “Great. What’s for dinner?”

Puberty Punt

While sitting in the general waiting area at L’s doctor’s appointment yesterday, I was handed a pile of paperwork. The usual stuff… Brushes teeth, eats a billion servings of vegetables every single day, doesn’t spend 12 hours in front of a video game… We happened upon a printout on puberty.

Apparently, girls can start puberty at age 8 these days. Who knew?

L was reading over my shoulder and said, “what starts to happen at age 8? What does that mean?”

(He’s terrified. I can hear it in his voice.)

M: “Well, that age applies only to girls. Seems some girls’ bodies can start to change when they’re eight years old.”

L: “Like what? What kind of changes? Like they get wrinkles?”

Thanks.

L: “Okay, so what happens to boys when they turn 10?”

M: “How would I know? I’m not a boy. You’ll have to ask your dad.”

A good punt if ever there was one.

Checkmate

M: “It’s time to sign up for chess club.”

L: “Oh, man, seriously? Please… Not this time.”

M: “But you’re so good at it. I wish I could play like you. Why not?”

L: “If you were to eat the same thing every single day of your life, it would get boring, right? It wouldn’t be zesty anymore, right? That’s what chess feels like to me right now. It’s the same thing over and over. Can I please take a break?”

Well said. He did win his last tournament. Maybe someday…

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Past Tense-First Day of Kindergarten

L-“I’m not nervous. I’m not nervous. I’m totally comfortable. I’m really excited. I’m just so not nervous.”

Teacher during K initiation, circle time:

“Does anyone have any feelings or thoughts he or she would like to share?

L-“Yes, I’m really, really nervous.”

Teacher: “Thank you for sharing that. Does anyone else feel that way?”

Many, many hands instantly fly upward. OF COURSE. Everyone’s petrified. Including me.

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Take My Moment

For a seriously articulate kid, one who knows the definitions and/or history of:

-Philanthropic
-Tautology
-Ethereal
-Maladjusted
-Eccentric
-Misconstrued
-Lusitania
-Sopwith Camel
-Corsair
-GeeBee
….and of course, Zombie

It’s so utterly heartbreaking to have him reach the end of his rope, end of the day, still not able to say “I’m tired” and describe a series of mishaps as:

“I’m so sad. I had a great day. And now I’m really struggling with the last part of my day.”

And he bursts into tears.

These are the moments when I’d give anything, everything to trade places. To have him know that this is a moment that will pass, that there will be many moments like this one.

As if I would have heard any of that when I was seven and just having a rough couple of hours.

Onward.

sad eyes