in his little face i see everything. this little boy. his eyes with long lashes. he looks down. and i say "look at me." and he does. but only for a moment. i fuss at him. "look at me." again. and again. finally, he looks long enough to pay attention.
anyone who knows me knows i am not "kid friendly." sad but true. my patience is extremely thin. i don't volunteer for the kids at church. i don't do birthday parties very well. i stand back and watch. all those mothers who jump in and get all dirty and sticky. ick. what a reflection i am painting for all the world.
don't get me wrong though. my kid. i love. dirty, sticky, stinky, icky, yucky, rotten. he's mine and i love him. but its the other little boy. ick. i thought. ick. why doesn't his mother clean him up? he's always dirty, sticky, stinky, icky, yucky, rotten. eeewwwwwww. i can't do this.
i can't do this. i. can. not. do. this. no. but i do. ick. this little boy with the eye lashes. his shirt is on backwards. again. i say nothing. he lives differently. we have rules. he has his own. and it drives me nuts. but i do this. i do this. "me too" he says. "me too." and he does.
this little boy has a buddy. a best buddy. my little boy. and i have no choice. "can i go over to his house?" ooohh nnoooo! please don't ask me to do this! "can i go over to his house mama?" ick. i have an instant headache. "go on." my little boy runs and bangs on the door. i think "well at least i don't have to worry about cleaning up a mess." my house is silent. the guilt washes over me. i'm not so kid friendly. no. i'm not.
it started with wednesday night church. "can he go mama?" i realize the age difference. i realize they have to be together or they will both be upset. i realize the disabilities others will have to deal with and accept. i realize i will have to explain why. "he's hard to understand." "he's younger than my son but he'll cry if he has to go to another class for his age." "they have to be together." "things are different with his family."
now its sunday school and church. "we'll see." we find an extra booster seat by the car. i sigh. loudly. i don't want to do this. "mama can he come too?" sigh. again. how can i explain otherwise. how can i say no. i can't explain my "ick" feelings. he's a little boy. "me too?"
i left the house today. to get away from boys. to go to a girl store. to look at girl things. no boy stuff. the cable guy was coming anyway. that's boy stuff. i remember my husband grunted as i left. not a groan. but a definite grunt. i did not feel the least bit guilty. i was tired of being the meanie. i'm the mean mama. you have to mind me!
i left a coupon at home. it was worth driving back to the house for. the clerk was more than glad to hold my things while i left to go get my coupon. "if you give me $20 i'll take the boys with me and stop at mcdonald's." did i just say that? were those my words? i watch my husband light up like a christmas tree waving a 20 at me. "me too?" the little boy asked. "go ask your mama." did i really, i mean really, did i say that?
load 'em up and move 'em out. we go back to the store. we all hold hands crossing the parking lot. "now you boys behave. don't touch anything. no running. or no mcdonald's." such good little boys in a girl store. i find the cure all for my ick. each little boy gets a blueberry smelling antibacterial hand gel with a neat holder to go on their belt loop. "me too?" he asks. "you too." i say.
both boys are noise sensitive and mcdonald's was a zoo! blood curdling screams could be heard for 2 blocks with no end in sight. it was a birthday party in full swing. ick. ick. ick!!! but 2 chicken nugget happy meals later and eleventy three (yes, i said eleventy three) trips thru the tunnels and down the slides you would never have known their ears hurt. and it was soooooooo hot. and our table was right in the sun.
with seatbelts buckled and headed for home we discovered a great air conditioner. all four windows all the way down. with blood curdling screams all my ick flew out the window as two little boys with full bellies laugh into the wind.
as we ride down the hill and both hands on the wheel i realize i'm looking at God.