Ready, Set, Don't Grow.
So I’m in the middle of writing a piece for Mommy Track’d. And it’s a fine piece. It’s nice. It’s friendly. Very amusing. Haha! But basically I’m writing on automatic with a giant crick in my neck, because the real story is, I’m leaving town tomorrow. I’m leaving town for ten days. My two boys are still on vacation from school, so they’ll have two days completely on their own, then next week, when they go back to school, they’ll be making their own breakfasts and making their own school lunches, and locking up the house in the morning (because their dad leaves for work before they leave for school) and returning home to an empty house (because their dad doesn’t get home until after six).
I’m saying this in a very measured, calm tone, aren’t I? However, inside my head there is small, insistent voice, no not a small voice at all, really a screaming kind of voice, screaming something like this: THEY WON’T EAT ANY VEGETABLES THEY WON’T EAT ONE PIECE OF FRUIT THEY WILL LEAVE THE HOUSE UNLOCKED ALL DAY LONG THE BACK DOOR WILL BE WIDE OPEN THEY WILL SPEND NINE HOURS IN FRONT OF THE COMPUTER THEY WON’T EAT BREAKFAST THEY WON’T EVER CLEAN ONE DISH EVER THE CRISPER DRAWER IN THE REFRIGERATOR WILL BE UNTOUCHED FOR TEN DAYS THEY WON’T LOOK BOTH WAYS WHEN THEY CROSS THE STREET THEY’LL RIDE THEIR BIKES IN THE DARK. They will wander out into oncoming traffic. Someone will jump off something and crack open a head. They will be caught in gang cross-fire. They will stay up every night until three a.m. They will forget to turn in all their homework assignments. They’ll forget to water my lettuce garden. They will get lost, They will somehow, explode into flames. They will somehow cause the house to explode into flames. They will swallow broken glass. And so on, and so on.
I know, I know, I’m the one who writes adamantly and lectures vociferously about how we need to give our kids the tools to be independent people. And we do! By golly. But I am usually giving them those tools while I am somewhere fairly close by, looking on from a safe distance. Feeling that I am somehow controlling everything. Steering them in the right direction. But at some point, they need to test their mad skills, right?