I’ve been deep in observation mode this summer. Sitting back. Watching. Waiting. Listening. I try to blend into the background, hoping to go unnoticed while I covertly observe the behaviors of the alien who is currently inhabiting my son’s body.
You see, I grew up with just a sister, and living with a teen boy is foreign to me. They’re like a different species–one that I obviously don’t understand.
I’m trying my best to make heads or tails of this 13 year old boy. And just when I think I’ve got him figured out and I can see the big picture, the image shifts, then disappears like a mirage seen in the middle of the desert on a hot summer’s day.
I’ve tried doing our dog, Lucy’s, head tilt trick to see if a different angle would give me a different perspective, but so far that too has been a bust. I’ll shake my head as if to clear my thoughts and move on for a time, but all the while I’m still wondering what makes him tick and when in the world will I ever figure this kid out.
Yesterday we ran to Target to do some quick back to school shopping and once again it became obvious that being thirteen must be such a painful age. All conversation had to be whispered and held at least 10 feet from another living soul. He continuously scanned the vicinity for our arch enemies–other humans who ventured close enough to hear our oh so secret dialogue.
Me: “Would you prefer the red or the black day planner?” I asked.
His eyes constantly scanned the empty aisle looking for ease droppers…
G: “The BLACK,” he replied with teeth clenched in a barely audible whisper. “But I don’t plan on using it…”
Me: “Obviously.” Insert eye roll followed by a deep sigh. “That’s why I received a daily email from your lovely teachers last year. But you WILL have one at least.”
As we left the check out line I noticed the boy was walking several feet behind me. Again. So I proceeded along with my head held high and acted like I was the Queen of England and he was my lowly serf who did not deserve to breathe the same air as me. He could follow in my wake, schlepping the packages to our chariot, where it would once again be safe to carry on a conversation at a normal volume.