Monday, November 28, 2011

Growing up

My 11 year old is growing up.  I know this because there are cracks appearing.  They were tiny to start with a "don't Mum", but have got bigger "Mum, don't say that kind of stuff" to finally a fault line is forming in his childhood "Mum, I HATE it when you say that" (spoken in annoyed voice in front of his friends.)  And buddy, if you're reading this you are still a "child", officially ok.  THATS why I used the world child, not pre-pre-teen or whatever.

I just make lame jokes that I think are very funny.  And I'm sure he'll think are funny in 10 years from now.  I say things in front of his friends, I try and talk with his friends (Mum, why did you say hi to them, they don't know you at all). I try and include myself in his conversations (never again, last time I included myself, I was met with a stoney silence, and they changed topics)
And yesterday, I think we inadvertently crossed a line.  And it wasn't even my fault.  I was embarrassing, even to myself, and certainly to an 11 year old.  I'd had a long hot run that ended at a beach.  The Husband had forgotten my swimmers.  But I was hot and needed a swim.  "I'll just go in my running gear", I said as The Husband was apologising.  "All good, no probs".
Will was horrified "No Mum, you can't do that, that will just look weird. Don't Mum"  Admittedly I wasn't looking my finest, but I was hot godammit, so in I went in my shorts and sports top.
Then as you do at the beach, you sit around a while, throw the ball, dig holes, and all of this I did in my wet running gear.  Surrounded by gorgeous beach bods in bikinis and other beach attire that wasn't running gear.

I was a little mortified and a whole lot of embarrassed.  Not sure why, I think I was channeling my son's vision of me.

I think what I am experiencing is a transition from participant to non-participant in some situations.  I am the driver of the car, I am the pizza maker, the movie orderer, the clean uniform provider, the note signer, the sleepover arranger, the homework nagger, the PS3 turn-off'er.  I have a cool factor of zero.
I'm often a non-entity in his eyes, especially in front of others.

But that's ok, I knew this was coming.  And I know he still adores me.  And that I'm the person who he wants to kiss him good night.
And that he'll come back to me.


  1. Oh.

    But I love your attitude toward this. So many of us take things personally when we're parents. One day I asked my 11 year old why she was always mean to me on Monday afternoons and she said "Well, because I know you'll still be nice to me even if I'm cranky." (tears!) They're learning, and all we can do is guide them.

    Beautiful post. x

  2. Thanks so much, it's such a tricky phase - I'm tentatively tip toeing through this because it will be me as the adult who could screw this up. Not our children x

  3. send this to mamamia or Hoopla...its lovely x

  4. Oh dear lise, I jump in the water in my running gear after EVERY run in summer. No one would even give me a second glance! Eldest is only 8, time will tell. Mount v Manly, NZ v Aus?? Classic, love it. X

  5. I wouldn't normally blink either, but it just had an all wrong kind of feel to it! Besides you look fab in anything babe so it's not quite the same. Thx for the comment Lovely xxx

  6. I need to adopt your attitude. My almost Miss 13 is totally disgusted with me and I was beginning to get down about it until I realised I was exactly the same at that age and eventually I grew up and liked my Mum again.

  7. Love it Becci, we're so not alone! Ta for the comment x