So last night, we were watching a movie and one of the characters made a slightly off-color comment. It was one of those little jokes writers slip into kiddie movies, presumably to keep the parents entertained. You know-- a double entendre that would be amusing only to those with knowledge of certain facts of life. We've seen this movie before but last night something new happened. Son laughed. Yep, he understood the double entendre.
I know I can't keep him young and innocent forever, but I hate these reminders that he's growing up, growing more aware, and entering into a whole new (and for me, unnerving) part of life. I wish I could make those innocent years last. I wish I could keep him my baby just a bit longer.
I knew this was coming, of course. After all, we had THE TALK with him quite some time ago. At the time, he found the whole concept of where babies come from a little, well, silly. Still, I was pleased that he was able to ask his questions frankly and without embarrassment because we really want to establish a relationship with Son in which he feels he can confide in us or come to us with questions. This is mostly because I lived in terror for several weeks when I was in kindergarten after Bradley Carter kissed me at recess. I loved babies, but felt that at the tender age of five I was much too young to be starting a family and according to my sources (namely my friend Misty) families are formed by kissing.
Not long after THE TALK, Son and I were shopping together. After writing a check I produced my driver's license. While I was hoping, as I always do, that the cashier would see my picture and accuse me of using stolen ID (never has such a horrid picture graced a license of any kind, including those given to graduates of the Bela Lugosi School of Horror Film Cosmetology) I noticed something; Son was studying my ID as well, with a very concerned look on his face.
By the time we reached the parking lot, I realized Son hadn't spoken since we left the store. This is extremely out of character for him. He never stops talking. Ever. He doesn’t even stop while he's asleep. I asked if he was okay and he nodded, but I could tell he was deep in thought. I knew exactly what to do. Rejoice and enjoy the few moments of silence!
But alas, the silence did not last long. As soon as we were in the car the questions began.
"Mom, what information is on your driver's license?"
"Oh, it has my name, my address, my birthday, stuff like that."
"Yeah, I know but what else?"
"Well, it lists how tall I am and what color my eyes are and what color my hair is."
"Yeah, Mom, I know that, but what else is on there?" At that point I figured he'd seen the picture and wondered why they'd put a photo of someone who clearly does not resemble me AT ALL on my ID. While I tried to think of an explanation for that, I stalled by asking,
"Son, is there something specific you'd like to ask me?"
"Oh, nothing. Never mind." That was new. It is unheard of for Son to voluntarily end a line of questioning. The officials at the Nuremberg trials would have been as likely to stop asking questions with, "So, what did you think of the Bratwurst?" Something was definitely up.
"Son, if you have a question, you are free to ask." I watched in the rearview mirror as he fidgeted a bit.
"No, it's probably none of my business."
Son considers everything to be his business. He is one of the greatest eavesdropping, spying, nosiest snoops of all time. He'll even yell from his surveillance spot at the top of the stairs for clarification when Hubs and I are having what we foolishly believe to be a "private" conversation" and don't speak clearly enough.
I tried to think what possible question he could have about my driver's license that could cause this unprecedented display of concern for privacy, but I couldn't come up with anything.
"Son, I appreciate your respect for my privacy. If you have a question though, you are free to ask. If it really isn't any of your business I'll tell you so."
He thought another minute and then, blushing more than a little he asked, "Well, I was just wondering. How come you got an "F" in sex?"
Without hesitation I replied, “That’s none of your business.”
Before I could explain that I was kidding though, he asked me in all seriousness, “Is that why I’m an only child?”
Like I said, I’m going to miss the years of Son's innocence. Not only did I feel he was still very much my baby, but he was incredibly entertaining.