It’s happening. I always knew the day would eventually come when my mothering was no longer needed as much. When my stellar parenting, directions, and advice – all based on my own remarkable choices – would no longer be required in Liv’s quest for survival. If I am honest, this whole transformation has been quietly occurring in the background for the last couple years. I’ve been purposely ignoring it. Until now. Today marks the day in which I am accepting it; in fact after the lunch we just had, there’s really no way I couldn’t.
The girl is funny. Wicked funny. Sure, part of me wants to look at her as she’s zinging these zingers and pretend I don’t get a thing she’s saying. But the other part of me is secretly thinking 3 things as my gut is shaking uncontrollably in utter hysteria: 1) Nice one. 2) A good parent would consider that a punishable word. 3) I am SO taking credit for at least some of her sardonic gifts.
We (ok, I) had a busy morning. Ran 14 miles at 5:45am. Home at 7:56, showered by 8:19, left for church at 8:50. Service until 10:15; video shoot for Nicaragua sponsor child at 10:20; Spanish class at 10:30; volunteer at the Event Center at 11:30. Uno madre and su hija…super famished.
Bdubs. We’re both kind of hooked on it, especially Liv. I love it for very different reasons, but I love it nonetheless. So in we go and the conversation immediately ensues. For all the finger-licking that has gone down there, it will forever pale in comparison to the conversations.
Liv: I’m excited to go to the OSU game next month. Those seats will rock!
Me: [Less excited, as we are taking her “boyfriend” for his 16th and a yet TBD “person” for me to sit with] It’ll be fun.
Liv: Who do you think you’ll take, Mom?
Me: [Still trying to be “Mom” and not succumb to the impending role-reversal] No idea, honey, but I’m sure someone will want to watch some football. It’s OSU!
Liv: You know, Mom, it’s easy.
Me: [Oh sh*t]: Watching football? I know it is.
Liv: Duh, no. Them.
Me: I love Fall weather. It’s my favorite season EVER.
Liv: Boys are just not all that complicated. [pretend male voice] “FOOD! SEX! ME NO HAVE EMOTION.”
Me: Well Liv, while there might be a bit of underlying truth to those stereotypes, I for one hope to find one some day with a smidge more substance than the Big Three.
Liv: You’re the one who told me stereotypes exist for a reason.
Me: [to myself] Great parenting genius, although she totally got your steel trap never-forgets-anything-that-anyone-she-loves-says thing.
Thankfully, our food arrives. Her dissertation continues with seemingly rhetorical questions such as, “Do you know how hypocritical boys can be, Mom? They LOVE long legs, yet we can’t be taller than they are. How can I be short with looooonnng legs? They want us to need them, yet we can’t be needy. They want us to be independent, but we can’t be smarter than they are.”
Honestly, it’s like a stand-up routine. Of course the audience would be all heterosexual women and men would hate her, but I’m pretty sure she could at least put herself through school with this monologue.
(And for the record as a side note, we are honestly not feminists. She is not forever jaded by my track record, nor do I speak ill about
any most of it. The constant message I preach is: foundational friendship. Have it.)
Just then, four high-school boys buffoon in and are seated immediately behind Liv. I see them. I see them pretend not to check out the back of her beautiful naturally curly hair and simultaneously wonder if I am actually her Mom, as if the mafia hit look I’m giving them isn’t a tell-tale.
Dude, LET’S SMASH SOME WINGS! I’M LIKE FREAKIN’ STARVIN’. DID YOU SEE THAT WAITRESS, C’MON, SHE IS SMOKIN’. Dude, ANDREW LUCK IS SO GONNA BE BETTER THAN MANNING. He’s LIKE…OLD NOW.
Liv: [With only a slight nod of her head over her shoulder, no turning around required]: Exhibit A.