I recently explained Middle Child's need to be home more than should be normal for any elementary-age boy. I was worried about how that kid was going to turn out when he grew up. Would he ever move out and go to college? Would he ever be able to hang out with kids for hours on end, playing games, making prank phone calls, talking about girls, going to dances...
But he grew up. Well, only up to 12, he's not real old yet, like 15, or 16 and driving, or 18 and at college. He's still home under my wing. But less so than in the past. Nowadays he can play at friend's houses for hours on end. But at one time in the past I was worried.
A couple weeks ago I decided I didn't really have to worry about that child anymore. There was The Dance at school. Middle Child was going. And he wasn't just slinking in and hanging in the back corner. He called a couple friends and invited them over for a Pre-Dance Party at our house. One of his good friends is a twin, and the twin is a girl. He even called and invited her to his Pre-Dance Party, but "as Just Friends." His words exactly.
I had a bunch of 12 and 13 year old boys at my house hanging out. So I got them some pizza and soda. They gobbled up the food. Then just before it was time to go to The Dance one of the boys called his Mom.
"Mom, don't you NEED me to babysit tonight?" pause "Ok, I'll be right home." Well, some kids weren't so excited about The Dance. He beelined it home to probably his first willing babysitting stint.
The rest of the kids piled in the car and we dropped them off at The Dance. We had a good laugh that Middle Child was so excited to go. A couple years ago we could not have foreseen this change in his behavior.
After The Dance he called me to report on the goings on of The Dance.
"I danced with Nine Girls. And a bunch of those dances were slow dances."
"Wow! Did you ask them all?"
"No, I asked seven and two asked me to dance."
"So, who were they? What are their names and do you like them?"
"I danced with J and M and L and S and C and R and W. I don't remember the rest of the girls names."
I guess I better start doing my homework. I'm betting the girls' names that he "Couldn't Remember" were the ones he likes. I gotta go and call his friends, find out who those girls were.