Saturday, May 25, 2013

Awesome Fumblings

Here's the kid and myself, just being awesome.

We've been in a flurry of events as we both wind down the 5th grade. I'm still in that strange and maternally painful space of, "Holy Crap, my kid is in the 5th grade...wait.. my kid is LEAVING the 5th grade?!" Nathan seems unphased by the whole ordeal. He's more prepared than I am!

He's had some special things he's been doing with his classmates. Ballroom dancing was one. A big one. They practiced two days a week for 8 weeks. Finally the evening arrives and the boy is nervous. He's looking sharp in his all black ensemble and bright green tie.

 He said, "What if I screw up?!"
I said, "If you do, just look awesome doing it."

He just took to the dancing like a pro. He was not afraid to express himself and move the way the music told him to move. 

We both auditioned for a show. I originally didn't want to get involved, as I didn't think I had a shot at a part. The boy asked if we could do it together and how could I say no then?

He was very nervous when he went to audition. He asked if I could go in the room with him, which I did. He wanted to sing the Hallelujah Chorus,( it sounds like Halle-lu- hah when he sings it,) which makes me smile inside because he belts it out with such power.

He started soft and had his head down. And then he stopped. He looked at me.  I gave him the best silent theatrical advice I could.

He nodded and then took a deep breath, threw his arms into the air and belted out his song like it was his job.

At that moment, I knew that he GOT it. All those tiny microseconds of teaching my kid little gems of theater and performing experience and it solidified into him understanding that there is a time and a place for BIG ARMS and this was IT.  He didn't break down, he didn't run away crying, he tried something new and bold and he nailed it. 

Pride filled me up like an over inflated balloon, almost to the point of bursting, and I didn't care if I did.
We've been spending more time working through hard emotional stuff instead of letting him not talk about it. His need to please is so strong, that if he feels he has disappointed me even in the smallest way, it morphs into crippling shame and  he gets really mired in it. As we talk about the difficult things, our family dynamic is getting stronger and we are supporting each other more in our personal efforts to be more emotionally intelligent and in our creative / artistic pursuits. 

Human growth and development has started and the boy comes home saying, "Hey mom, we had that class today." It's like an invitation to talk about it, but I have to know the password, which seems to change every time we discuss it.

  I'll ask him what they talked about and he says, "I can't talk about it. " I say, "Okay, that's cool." About 5 minutes later, he'll start up a conversation about what they chatted about and he'll leave a blank in the sentence, and I have to figure it out, which I usually do. He'll respond with an, "OH MY GOD, Mom!" and laugh and leave the room. But then, he'll come out again and start poking at the subject again, waiting for my reaction.  I'm proud to say that I haven't flinched yet. 

I explained to the boy that my parents NEVER discussed it with me. EVER. 

I always promised myself that if I ever became a parent, I wouldn't keep my kid in the dark and/or tell them that sex was dirty or wrong. I'm working hard to keep that promise, and to be open to discussing it, even if it's weird. I am glad that he is okay with talking to me about things, even though I'm a girl. I do have a very dear friend who said he would talk to the boy if he had man things to discuss. 

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