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Growing Pains

Remember that show from the 80s, with Kirk Cameron, Alan Thicke and Tracey Gold: Growing Pains? I loved that show. I wanted to be Carol Seaver, except that I always though Mike was too cute; he was a loveable troublemaker. Whenever I think about my kids growing up, I think of that show.

The Girl.  If there’s a girl in the room, my Girl can make a friend. The other day at the pool, I was sitting there watching her play like the best of friends with a little girl she’d met all of 15 minutes before. She’s always been that way: my little social butterfly, who’s not so little anymore.  Okay, well maybe she’s still little in size, barely 4 feet tall and not even 50 lbs. But she’ll be 11 this year and, in a few short months, will be a middle-schooler.  She’s already had her first crush, a boy whom she always described as “he’s so tall” while grinning almost unbearably. I already had “the talk” with her too, just shortly before the school year ended.  It was harder to do than I ever imagined. Trying to have a serious, grown-up conversation without making jokes or scaring her profusely, when to me she still looks like a baby. I’m still not certain she understood everything or maybe I told her too much. I don’t know; I’m just doing the best I can, hoping she believes me that I’ll try to answer all her questions, even if I am laughing hysterically or blushing uncontrollably on the inside.

Boy Genius.  Boy Genius has blackheads.  He’s 8, so I immediately dismissed it as “he’s a boy” and “doesn’t get clean enough.” But if that were true, wouldn’t they be elsewhere than just his face? So doesn’t that mean it’s hormones? Hormones?! At 8?! He’s starting orthodontic treatment this summer, getting a spacer “installed” just before school starts.  When the orthodontist said he’d probably talk funny for a little while, until he gets used to it, he said “I already talk funny.” I guess that’s true; he’s always had a problem with Rs but has improved so much over the last year. I worry that his somewhat fragile self-esteem (we already see signs of this at times) will be dented even more by the spacer and inevitable face mask and braces.  I know kids survive this stuff all the time, but I worry nonetheless.

Wonder Boy. And Wonder Boy starts big school in the Fall. Okay, so it’s only Pre-K, but it’s at the “big school” (elementary) where brother goes; so to him, it’s a big deal. ‘Course with him, everything’s a big deal, including not getting kicked out of daycare on a daily basis.

Hmmm, what’s the saying? As long as we have each other.

Published inChildrenTelevision

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