Baby’s First Crush
Mommy, you know what I’m going to buy with my Christmas money?”
“Um … what, Jack?”
“A surveillance camera. So I can watch you … in the bathroom.”
Okay, so my son is going to be a spy. Or a pervert.
This year Jack told me he had to make an extra special Valentine. My ears perked up.
“Because I asked Mikaela to be my Valentine and she said yes.”
He tells me with a mixture of shyness and pride. Are you f**ing kidding me? How cool is that? It’s like an episode of the Little Rascals come to life!
“Maybe we should buy her a gift.” I gently suggest. Why am I doing this?
“Like candy or something. What kind of candy does she like?”
“Why don’t you ask her tomorrow?”
Do you not understand? This is my chance. My chance to create, for someone else, the boyfriend I always wanted! Like Dr. Frankenstein, I can make the perfect boy. A boy who will not only buy a girl a gift — a boy who will take the time to find out what she likes so she will actually like it.
Think About It. Jack is only seven years old — can you imagine him at 16? CALLING A GIRL BACK. Complimenting her, but in a way that she doesn’t ever feel suffocated? Listening to her. Respecting her as a person. Asking about her feelings. Maybe even buying her shoes!?
I am perfectly aware that this impulse of mine is wrong on so many levels. Too many to list, in fact. Suffice it to say, the afternoon before Valentine’s Day, we pick out a candy necklace and bracelet. Because what woman doesn’t like a piece of jewelry?
When we get home, I make handmade Valentines and Jack writes them out. We have only one fight. A week later, I’m doing the laundry. I go through Jack’s pockets — because he uses them as mini-garbage cans. I find a small piece of paper crumpled up. I almost chuck it, but decide to unwrap it first. It says:
Later!! From: Mikaela
I’m a little thrown. Have I encouraged this romance? I was never so bold. I kicked Michael Chetwyn in the shins when he gave me a heart-shaped box of chocolates in the third grade. I laughed out loud when one of the red-haired twins (the cuter one) tried to kiss me in eighth grade. I was a late bloomer.
I give Jack my old iPhone to take to school on the day he can play video games (don’t judge). He comes home and tells me, “Mikaela gave me her phone number.” I tell him that the phone is not working, just the games. He bursts into tears, which makes me feel reassured that yes he is still seven years old.
p.s. Mikaela got Jack a teddy bear (pictured)