It seems like wherever I go lately my mom friends are talking about one thing- twelve year olds. K-boy is my oldest, so this is my first experience having a creature of this sort in the house. Yes, I said creature. I love my son dearly, but overnight is seems he has morphed into someone familiar and yet mysterious to me. To hear my mom friends talk about their offspring of his age, he is not alone.
What is it about twelve that sends children into this odd journey into the unknown? K-boy can be described most accurately now not as a child, but as a half-grown man. He's nearly matched me in height, he shaves, and he's rapidly developing a funny, cynical view of life.
He's ultra sincere, passionate in his beliefs, and amazingly interesting to converse with.
On the negative side, he tends to think he already knows everything. Trust me... he doesn't. He tests us lately, staying up too long, sleeping late, and grumbling when asked to do chores.
Most humorously, I've got to find the humor in this, he experiences what I call 'teen moments'. The latest of these was last night, when he locked the keys in BadDad's car after his Jeet Kune Do lesson. He later sheepishly admitted that he was thinking about the book he is reading (Lord of the Rings) when he absentmindedly locked the car.
The list goes on though. Since he turned twelve back in the fall, K-boy has: put a stainless steel teakettle in the microwave, performed jumping-jacks in the living room with a bottle of A-1 sauce in his hands (with the expected results), and somehow overnight he's become obsessed with personal grooming...yet he still leaves his dirty socks on the floor. None of his mishaps were intentional, they were just side effects of his emerging teen brain.
He's full of surprises too. We've caught him taking it upon himself to change the channel if a show comes on that he feels is inappropriate for his two younger siblings. He also helps out unexpectedly sometimes. Just yesterday, I found him in the backyard, moving a huge pile of dirt that BadDad had slated for one of his own weekend projects. I saw K-boy out there and asked him why he was working so hard. He said, "Well, it helps me to think, and it seems to aggravate some people less if I think in the yard instead of doing it in the bathroom." This by the way, is word for word. We're hanging onto the first part of his quote.
This age is , I know, just a precursor to the teen years to come. As frustrating as certain moments can be, I treasure this time. Yes, he is half-grown, but if the glimpses that I see of the man he may become prove true, he will grow to be a man of worth. That is what I hope someday to see.
linking this post to Pour Your Heart Out