We drive the same route to BrightSide’s office every time we visit. Take the first exit off the interstate, turn right, go straight through two lights, and look for the turn (plus a few other steps that have nothing to do with this post). It’s a no brainer of a route, only 15 minutes from the house, and makes for a quick popover to see our guy.
I never thought much about it until the day an enormous billboard stunned the kids into silence.
“Bodies and stuff”? So you’re gonna talk about bodies and…sports? Hobbies? Star Wars?
NO! Like, BODIES. They separate the boys and the girls, and the boys have to go with Mr. H. [the assistant principal] and he’s gonna talk to us about…[dramatic pause] like, penises and stuff.
Really? You say that like you might burst into flame or something.
Ah, the dreaded fifth grade talk. Is there anything more tragic for an eleven year old than sitting in a room with his or her classmates, listening to an adult they know talk about puberty? Not according to my kids. T-man survived his and he’s already priming Bear for the dreadful day when she’ll be herded off with the girls to discuss womanly things.
I’ve gained an intimate understanding of the space-time continuum over the last couple of years, which is really pretty remarkable given my track record with science stuff.
Based on my own (highly unscientific) observations, approximately 89.5% of extremely personal conversations with my children take place while in the car. Furthermore, when that topic of conversation is sex, the effects of the Special Theory of Relativity are 99.7% more noticeable.
That is to say, an object in motion actually experiences time at a slower rate than an object at rest (which is sure as hell how it feels when you’re trapped in the driver’s seat getting peppered with questions about puberty and reproduction).*
For every mom who’s had her young one ask loudly, “What’s THAT?!” in a restroom stall. The post that will make you laugh until you cry. Or tinkle. Or both.
“As if the 2 hour delay wasn’t bad enough, the school bus ran late. We sat in the car at the end of the street, sheltered from the cold and snow. Naturally, the kids take the opportunity to push buttons, turn dials, and rummage through all the cars compartments.
“What’s this?” Luke asks holding up a tampon he retrieved from the glove box.
“Oh, that’s just something for mommy.”
I give him my standard response…I deflect and dismiss like a pro. But this time we were stuck in the car together with nothing to distract us.”
It was the last week before Winter Break. I had gifts to wrap, baking to finish, teacher goodies to package, neighbor bags to stuff, Christmas cards to finish, and a few last minute gifts I was tracking through UPS with a fervent prayer that they’d arrive in time for family gatherings. I already had two mornings committed to volunteering in Bear’s class and a third day blocked for (silent groan) cafeteria duty so the teachers could enjoy their holiday luncheon.
It’s fair to say I was pretty much freaking out about the time crunch.
So I was torn when T-man said he wanted me to come to his DARE graduation that Monday morning. I mean, he actually wanted me to be with him for a school event, so YAY. But I was already at the school three other days that week so the other part of me was all omg, really?! It has to be THIS Monday?