I was reading Is There Any Mommy Out There and she was talking about her surprise at being through the Halloween ritual three times - time had done to her what it does to all of us: lulled and rocked and moved right on. What brought me up short was when I thought, "she's been through this three times and I only have three more left."
My stepson, 11, wanted a costume. Not to trick-or-treat in (he declared he'd rather just hand out candy, which since we have ZERO neighbors, amounts to "I'd rather just play computer games or watch Bear Grills) but to go to a party. With GIRLS. "Gak," I replied, stunning him with my parenting skills. This is a terrifying turn. Not because it isn't expected (I have two older daughters; I KNOW what is coming), but because ... well, let me tell a story to explain.
I had to take him to get a filling done. My first child with a cavity - I reeled when the dentist told me. It was awful - they had to get a paper bag and everything. So we took the afternoon off, just him and I, and went. On the way home, being Mother of the Year, I bought him a big ol' watermelon Laffy Taffy. He couldn't eat it yet, since he still had to keep checking that he even HAD a tongue, so he was turning it over in his hands and noticed the jokes on the back. Being the loving child he is, he read it aloud:
"Hey Rikki, why are football players never cold?"
I ponder this, and give up (see? Mom of the Year, I'm telling you).
"I don't understand the answer."
Me: "What do you mean, buddy? Tell me and we'll figure it out."
Him: "It says 'under flap.'"
That I have to explain to this wonderful boy that the answer to the joke is under the flap and he is at the stage where he's starting to notice girls, ah, makes me worry a tad.
So I'm going to enjoy the now, the third-from-the-last trick-or-treating.