I have been living in a bit of a dream world when it comes to raising kids. My oldest, the Queen, did not give me a bit of trouble...she followed the rules, told me where she was and what was going on and generally was pleasant. It would be a perfect story if not for the senior year of high school where she hated me and I hated (kinda) her. But otherwise, it was perfect.
My son, Mac, I was sure was going to be the one who needed regular monitoring, a weekly smack down and consequenses doled out for every little infraction. But, honestly, the only infractions that we dealt with were infractions with his mouth and I told him to keep it shut daily. About 3 days a week, he listened and the rest I pretended I didn't hear. Generally, he was following in my footsteps with the mouth issue so I couldn't really get on him.
Now comes the third child. The quiet one who seems to have it all together. I have noticed that he knows how to put the blame on his brother for things and how he is never in trouble but I thought it was just my fantastic parenting style. Yeah...right.
Last Thursday, while the group he was with, was following directions, 14 of the "sneaky" ones left the theater and went to watch a movie they would rather see. Forget that chaperones were trying to keep track of them or that we just had a shooting in a theater a month ago...forget that the rules were for them to stay with their group...just forget all that. They, my son, wanted to see a different movie and what is it going to hurt if they sneak out, go into the other movie and then sneak into the one they were supposed to be in later. What is that going to hurt...and the movie they were supposed to watch is boring and stupid too.
What they didn't count on was a delay in the movie and the lights coming on in the theater...the chaperones and teacher counting and realizing they were missing quite a few. What they didn't count on was when the movie was over and they began to sneak back in, they didn't get far because the teacher was sitting out on the bench waiting for all the little sneaks. I guess they didn't count on that. As we say in our house..."BUSTED!"
Friday morning came and my sneak was tired and of course, being the great mother I am, woke him gently, like I would a big grizzly bear, and offered to make his lunch and get his drinks ready for band camp. It was the end of a long hard week and he was tired. As we left for band camp, he wanted to drive and I let him. It was a perfect, "I am such a great mom" morning for me. Then the confession hit. "Mom, I don't know if you heard and I bet you haven't but some of the kids and I went to see Batman instead of staying in the movie we were supposed to see...and we got caught." I sat in the seat and thought about what he just said. My Queen was not a sneak...and even my Mac...the one who I would expect this kind of thing, didn't do that last year when a group did. But, this guy, my easy, quiet child snuck out and essentially didn't follow the rules? I was at a loss for words and didn't say much. He drove down the road in silence and then said..."Mom, I'm not a bad person" to which I responded, " I guess I thought you had more integrity." I heard my mother in my head laying on the guilt trip and me thinking she was just a freaking "be-atch" as we say in our house. I was trying to lay the guilt trip on him and he wasn't falling for it.
Then I asked him how I was going to ever trust him again. "How do I know when you say you are going to church, you're not going to some party and smoking crack and doing meth? I mean, you said you were going to one movie and you went to another?" By this time, we had pulled up to the school and I knew I had to deliver the fatal blow. "I'm not sure I can ever trust you again...and wait until I tell your father." He got out of the car, grabbed his tuba and went into the school.
I immediately called Jim to let him know what a lying sneak we were raising. To say he was stunned is an understatement. You see, he and I live in a parenting dream world because we think that how we raised the first two made them the people they are so far. I really think we got lucky but I love to think it's us. "Wow" Jim said, "I never thought it would be him...I would have expected it out of Mac." I had to laugh at how alike we are as we get older. Except for the fact that he is from Mars and I am from Venus...we think a lot alike. Jim went on, "Good thing that I'm gonna have him in the back country for 5 days so I can ride him like a dog about making good choices the whole time." You see, the boys had decided that before Mac left for college and my youngest started school, they were going camping and hiking to bag a bunch of 14er's to add to the list. It might be a long week if you are my youngest...
I guess this one will be the one that gives us a run for our money during his teenage years. In one week, I am passing off Mac to the Queen at college. She can mother him and I can move on to focusing on the "sneak." The last thing I told him before I gave him total absolution is this..."thank God your father and I have nothing better to do than to keep an eye on you. You may be the luckiest 15 year old in the world to have two adults focusing on your every move." He loved that...he really did.
We'll tawk tomorrow,
I love you all,