The Supervision Situation.
by Wendy Sachs
“Mommy, last night I had a dream that Ben kissed me!” my six-year-old daughter Lexi told me excitedly, while perched on my bathroom sink, watching me apply my makeup.
“Wow!” I said, nearly impaling my eye with the mascara wand. I was shocked that Lexi just shared her first intimate dream and floored by the coincidence that I, too, had dreamed the night before about a guy kissing me – a guy who was most definitely not my husband.
“Well, was it a good kiss?” I asked, hoping for a few more details….wondering if her kiss was the PG rated High School Musical smooch, or if by some nighttime, subconscious transference, she tapped into my R-rated dream.
“Yes, it was a good kiss…I think,” Lexi said.
“I’m going to tell Ben at school today about my dream.” she said matter-of-factly. “But I’m going to tell him that he doesn’t have to marry me because I am still marrying Justin.”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea,” I gently said. “Boys get embarrassed about these things. You can share the dreams with Mommy (yes, I still sometimes speak in the third person to her), but probably best if you don’t mention it to Ben or Justin.”
My kindergarten daughter is already fantasizing about boys. She spends hours talking to her “boyfriend” in the mirror and role playing with her dolls through elaborate tales involving dates, dances and even dashed dreams. And after buying Lexi her umpteenth Gabriella doll at Target, I watched in my rear view mirror on the drive home as she unabashedly made out with the cardboard picture of Troy Bolton that came in the package. My girl has passion and crushes and a creative mind… wonderful qualities I know I should embrace… but she scares me too.
Then there is my moody and complicated 8-year-old son Jonah who is already sequestering himself in his playroom and not letting me listen or watch as he makes up fanciful stories with his Legos. By barricading our family and even our dog out of his play area, Jonah has made it clear that he needs privacy and space…all this and the kid has only lost his two front teeth…not his virginity.
The hormones are still years away from charging through their tiny 45 pound bodies, yet I’m already dreading the inevitable horrors of living with Tweens and then….the ultimate monsters….TEENAGERS. So if you thought that the most important time to be around your children was in the early years when they were potty training and biting other kids on the playground – think again. Apparently there’s no good time to go dark or disappear at work and become a total Slacker Mom.
A recent article in Forbes probed the question about when is the most critical time to take a sabbatical from your career and stay home with your kids….when they are babies or when they are teenagers?