“Hi Tommy! Hi! It’s us! It’s Natalie and Mommy! Hello?” Natalie called out. Then she frowned and looked at me. “Why won’t he say hi? It’s rude.”
“I think it’s because we’re in his school and he’s embarrassed,” I explained. We were there for his awards assembly and his class had just filtered in. His eyes had flicked briefly to us—probably to ensure that we had arrived—and then he refused to acknowledge our existence.
“Tommy!” Natalie tried again, to no avail.
I had already embarrassed Tommy earlier when I had driven him to school. I dared to give him a kiss and he had yelled, “Mom! This is public!” when I pressed my lips to his cheek.
Well, excuse me! I only gave him life. I should be able to kiss him whenever I feel like it.
And I should be acknowledged when I show up for the boring award assemblies. It’s entertaining when your kid’s name is called but after that it’s like, lalala, this stinks, man, a lot of other people’s children look weird.
“Tommy is so rude,” Natalie muttered. Rude is her latest word. I’m rude for not letting her watch Yo Gabba Gabba whenever she wants. Tommy is rude for not saying hello. Tom is rude for going to work instead of hanging out with her. Basically, everyone is rude. (“Rude!” Natalie had bellowed when a car had cut in front of us (with no turn signal.) I agreed with her there.)(And yes, I tried to get her to say HOW Rude, like Stephanie Tanner on Full House, but she won't do it.)
I took a picture of the back of Tommy’s head since he wouldn’t turn around:
He ended up getting two awards: one for the Honor Roll and another for bringing his grade up from a B to an A in reading. He works incredibly hard since some things don’t come as easily to him. He struggles with reading and writing and I’m proud that he puts forth the effort to improve himself even though sometimes he yells, “I’m so tired of school!”
After the awards were passed out, the kids could come over and take a picture with their parents. I’m surprised Tommy approached us. At first it looked like he wasn’t but I kept going, “Tommy? Tommy? Tommy? Tommy?” just like he used to go, “Mommy? Mommy? Mommy? Mommy?” when he was younger. He probably wanted me to shut up.
Yup, that’s a random little boy. Natalie decided to adopt him a la Angelina Jolie. Well, she wishes. She started playing with the kid halfway through the assembly and he didn’t want to leave her.
“Why did mostly all girls get the Principal’s award?” Tommy wondered, naming the award people got for all As.
“They studied hard. Instead of playing video games, they studied,” I added pointedly. Tommy sometimes becomes engrossed in his Nintendo DS. Or making paper airplanes or Origami.
“Are girls smarter than boys?” Tommy wondered.
No, I didn’t say that. I WANTED TO, you have no idea HOW BADLY. But instead I went, “No, it’s just girls mature faster than boys. But you saw a couple of other boys get the award. It means they studied and focused on their work. I never got straight As. I tried, but math always got me. Stupid math…”
Tommy sighed. “Yeah. Math gets me too. I hate long division. Who cares about remainders?”
“I’m saying! Who does care about remainders?” I agreed. A teacher walked by and gave me a disapproving look. “I mean…remainders are important. Make sure you pay close attention in math and you’ll get it.” I leaned over and gave Tommy a kiss. He gave me a Look.
“I have to go back to my class,” Tommy said. “You can give me a quick hug but not another kiss.”
So I did that and watched my boy get in line.
How did he get so big? Wasn’t he just 3 yesterday?
Growing up is so rude!