Last night, after dropping Tucker at swim practice, my eyes blurry with tears, I planned the blog post I would write. He turns 15 today and our relationship is stormy.
As a child, he loved me most ferociously. No one else would do for Tuck. He had to have Mama.
Now as a teenager, he hates with an equal passion.
Oh, I know that this will pass. I know he is marching toward an adulthood where his strength will be an asset, but that doesn't make it any easier to deal with him now.
I see him wince at every word I say. Any suggestion, any observation, any witticism is like a dagger in his teenage heart.
I spent the day shopping for the list of clothes he requested for his birthday, entering stores where the music is too loud, the lights are low and the scent of cologne burns the inside of my nose.
As he berated me on the drive to swim team, he couldn't know that I had skipped the Statehouse Rally to make his birthday special.
Earl called me as he walked past the rally on his way to work. People chanted. Bands played.
"Those are for people who don't have a kid having a birthday tomorrow," I explained to him as I walked past the Cinnabon inhaling deeply.
He also had no clue that his girlfriend and I were coordinating a surprise birthday party.
So all of those thoughts were racing through my brain as I went back home. I helped Grace with a French project by phone and nearly fell asleep before it was time to pick Tucker up from swim practice.
He got in the car and I decided to begin my birthday present to him. Silence. I would make no comments that would make him cringe. I would say nothing for most of the day.
"What's wrong? You okay? You tired?" he asked after a minute of silence.
So I broke my silence to say I was fine.
"You know, it's amazing how much better I feel after some exercise," he said.
Don't even get me started. I wanted to bat him upside the head. But I went back to silence instead.
I'll take the good mood when it comes and check out the sky for a blue moon while I'm at it.
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