This past Monday after my return from vacation (late Sunday evening)…. I phoned home about 3:30 in the afternoon, and was told by my younger daughter that she wanted me to come home “RIGHT NOW”. This is 6 year old speak for ‘I missed you a WHOLE lot, and I gettin’ tired of grandma bossing me around- you know, she’s not as much of a sucker for me as you are mommy’. Well, I had a seminar scheduled for 4 pm, and since I’m the coordinator of the seminar series, and I know the speaker- I couldn’t just punch the time card and check out right at that minute (those of you in academia are laughing your asses off right now because you know that there is no time card and you almost never leave your job when you leave the office). So- I asked the LittleA what my excuse should be to the speaker for not showing up … and out of her mouth like a shot came the words… ‘tell him you have strep throat and you have to go home RIGHT NOW.’
Great, I’m raising an adorable lying little delinquent.
Last night when I got home, the BigA was lying prostrate on the sofa, complaining loudly of dizzyness and coughing up a storm. I did the typical mom type comforting things- but it seemed to me that there was a little TOO much energy being expended on complaining. So… I said- BigA, do you have any homework tonight?? And, out of her mouth like a shot, came the words- I don’t think I can go to school tomorrow I feel so dizzy- and I have a major science project due tomorrow that I don’t know how to finish. I’m now 99% sure that she’s faking sick so as not to have to finish the science project. But- I decide to get the extra 1% assurance- so I asked her if she would like a treat- something we have had in our house fewer times than I can count on two hands in her 11 year lifetime- maybe she would like a Coke (the soda, obviously)? I have never seen that child move so fast, from the sofa – or anywhere else for that matter. Who knew- Coke cures all things.
Make that two little delinquents that need attention from their mom.
What’s hysterical now is to think back on all the crappy, awful, embarrassing science projects I did in grade school–and how much I HATED them–and how awesomely amazing a scientist I am today. That feels like a blog post in the making, actually. Wonder how many people loved their 7th grade science projects? (Mine was about different kinds of fertilizers….)
At our place the treat is Dr. Pepper! And hugs of course, but those are not rare. With the younger one, anyway. The older one finds hugs to be awkward now. So get in all the cuddle time when you can, drdrA.
I did a project on an insect that I captured a number of, kept in an aquarium, observed, eventually killed the lot (by accident) . . .all before they became well known as an endangered species and I morphed into an insect ecologist. Oh God! I never want to publicly defend that one.
Dr. J- Lead on with the post! I don’t know why she was so stressed out about the project- it wasn’t that big of a deal. Last year we built a model of stonehenge (and did an accompanying research report), and the previous year we did a whole project about soil pollution. I’d love to post pictures her with her projects- but I’m a little squeamish about publishing pictures of my kids.
Anonymoustache- Dr. Pepper is my thing, but the kids prefer Coke. Funny that you say that about the hugs- because my second thought for this post was to write about the LittleA wants me to come home ‘right now’ and the BigA wants me to drop her off around the corner from the bus stop so she isn’t seen with me (or her dad). I’m trapped between two worlds there too.
anon- That’s a great story. I’m wondering what my daughters will morph into… I’m enjoying watching it happen before my very eyes.
Ahhhh, how good to be able to read this blog and its responses…
As a grandmother, mother of three sons, and an expert in the area of attention, I applaud you for holding these conversations…I have quite a perspective nowadays and know that the kind of attention we get in our childhoods lives with us forever…in fact, the kind of attention our parents got in their childhoods lives with us forever. While I have no scientists in my immediate family, my middle son told me when we moved to California from Michigan (he was 4+) (I was separating from the state and my husband) that he didn’t like it much, as the bugs in Michigan were better…today, in his office (he’s a CEO in Austin) and his home, he has abundant bug specimens, framed, of all sizes and shapes….
Want to do a project on that???
Keep writing and watching…..