a Saturday night,
and for the first time that I can remember
my kids are off on their own, near and far.
Kate is going with a friend to a local production
of Thoroughly Modern Millie.
Chris has gone swimming and to spend the night
at a friend's house.
Trey is about to leave to go to a birthday party
and sleep over at another friend's house.
Is this what it will be like as our kids get older?
Each one off on a different path while we are left behind?
Mind you, we are not pining; quite the opposite, in fact!
We have plans to go out to dinner, just the two of us.
But even so, it is very strange.
And I will be worrying about Trey,
off on his first sleep-over that isn't family or with his brother.
Plus, I worry about him because he is just so different from my other kids.
For example, Chris (age 10.5) was packing up to go to his sleepover
and in running through the list of what to take, I said,
"Did you take Otto?" (his stuffed animal)
"Oh NO!" he cried, and ran up to get him.
"Thanks, Mom," he said in a relieved voice, "Otto would have really missed me
if I had left him behind!"
Trey, on the other hand, was in flat refusal to take HIS special stuffed animal.
After much convincing, he agreed to take it
ONLY if it was at the bottom of the bag,
hidden under all his clothes,
and if his underwear (boxers only, please) was at the bottom of the bag too,
hidden UNDER the clothes and the towel.
That's the thing..
I am confounded by this seven year old who is so concerned about what other people will think of him,
who is so concerned about being "cool" at such a young age.
My other kids aren't like that and I like it that they aren't.
I don't tend to really like "cool kids."
When Trey started Kindergarten, he came home
and started telling me who was popular and who was not.
Again, nothing my other kids ever talked about.
So, I worry that he will go off to this sleepover,
be afraid or uncomfortable and be unwilling to call me
because he doesn't want to appear "uncool."
I have talked with him about it
and I also covertly called the mom and told her as well.
We'll see how he does, my seven year old
Even if he doesn't think he is.