There was a time, many years ago, when my son would get back from school and start chattering non-stop. He would follow me around the house giving me a minute-by-minute update on his day, about what had happened in school and about who had said what and what his responses had been to the comments made by his friends. He would intersperse all those reports with some interesting facts about animals that he had heard about, read about or watched on TV. While I would laugh and enjoy his chatter, I would also chide him to stop talking and eat his snack.
How quickly times change. Now, when my son gets home from school he heads straight to his room. I am the one who seeks him out and follows him, pestering him with questions. I get nods, monosyllabic replies and some rolling eyes when my questions exceed a mere few.
My son inhabits a different world now; a world which has his friends, music, school work, food and all his other interests. However, my little boy does emerge from time to time, when he seeks me out to talk. I cherish these truly wonderful times, where I try to listen without trying to solve his problems (as difficult as that may seem), and without passing any judgement.
Yesterday, I was in the kitchen, prepping for lunch. I had my earphones connected to some melodious 80s music. I swayed to the rhythm while my hands chopped and diced. Soon, my son got back home from a class. He waved, walked into the kitchen, took my phone and changed the song to something from his playlist. He mouthed, “Listen to this”, and was gone.
From a slow number the music switched to rock, and my whole body language changed. I felt energized and matched the chopping to the song’s beat. It made me smile. It also made me strangely happy that I had been given a peek into my son’s world!!
The way our children interact with us does change with time, and each phase is to be cherished!!