Tuesday, February 16, 2010

This Boy

Nathan. My first born. That I love so much. That gave me gray hairs within a week of his birth. This boy has taken to wearing black from head to toe, gazing off into the distance, and sighing deeply. I've said for years that he is my brooding artist, and lately the brooding part has increased. But his artistic output has also increased. He has to keep a writing journal for school, and when he shares it with me, I have to physically put a hand over my mouth to keep from loudly squealing with delight at the amazing stories and observations he creatively strings together in its pages. Instead, I nod my head, hand it back, and say Dude, that was cool, thanks for sharing.

As far as the wearing of black, I'm not a good role model for Nathan in this area. About six months ago, I went through my closet and drawers and gave away everything I hadn't worn within the last year. The remaining clothes were predominantly black.

When I go shopping, I really do try to buy things that aren't black, but the truth is, I rarely wear them. The tags stay on, and I end up giving them away after a year has passed and I've never worn them. So it isn't like I can tell Nathan that he can't wear black. He doesn't have that much of it, and what he does have are hand-me-downs or bargains from the thrift store. But if his black clothes are clean, that is what he reaches for first. Since he is the kid who never cared a bit about what he wears (unlike my preppy boy Ben), it's surprising to see him suddenly expressing himself through his clothing. I did draw the line at the current trend that features skulls all over kids clothing. Even if it’s just a teeny-tiny one, my answer is no.

As far as the future goes, I’m taking it one brooding day at a time. We’re just hanging in there and doing a lot of deep breathing in preparation for what things will be like when he's a teenager. So far, he's got the angst thing down pat. And I have a stockpile of hair color to keep washing all that gray hair away.
But we can still coax the occasional smile out of him! We tell him all the time that his Secret Power is his smile. You know how yawns are contagious and it's hard to resist yawning when you see someone doing it? Nathan's smile has a similar power. You cannot return Nathan's smile with anything other than one of your own. He is very aware of this, and likes to pull it out when he knows he's going to get in trouble. It's very hard to be upset with him when you can’t get that big smile off your face!

This boy, Nathan? I love him so much. And he makes me love my parents so much more. I had angst spilling out of every pore of my body from age 9 to age 19, and somehow we all survived. It gives me hope that we're going to make it with Nat. Lord give me strength!

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