Saturday, February 09, 2013

Growing Up

I got up this morning after H had left for work. The older kids were still snoozing as I sat Jude in her chair and prepared breakfast for R and I. As I sipped my coffee waiting for the water to boil, I noticed that someone had written all over my cereal box. I had only purchased it yesterday and had not recalled Rowena being anywhere near it. I picked it up and upon closer inspection discovered a commentary on my chose of cereal.

Initially I thought it had been done at the store. The commentary was so sarcastic and clever. But the writing was familiar. I laughed regardless of who did because really pure Bran cereal is nothing to write home about. When Umberto emerged I asked him who did it and he said "Camille."

Ahh..Camille. Upon further reflection it was not surprising. Camille is deliciously sarcastic. Her humor is sharp and a big stinging. Her take on the world is dry. Raising Camille is at time frustrating and at other times incredibly rewarding and rich. She is smart and inventive. She takes initiative. She reads everything. Her knowledge is impressive as is her take on said knowledge. With Camille, you have to be on your toes. But she's also arrogant (never needs help even when she does), dramatic, at turns over sensitive and utterly unempathic. In other words, she perfectly human.

With Camille, there has often been struggle. Earlier posts here talk about my frustration with things like getting her out the door. Balancing her needs of the solitary with my other kids' needs for the social. But as Camille gets older, I find that those struggles are not so much not happening as much but rather they over shadowed by the pleasure I take in the person that is unfolding. While I enjoy most ages of my kids, and despite my banter about the tween and teen years, I have to admit that I love watching Umberto and Camille morph into the teenager. I want to say they've become real people but that sounds much to insulting to the younger beasties. But in some ways it's true.

Of course all of my children are people. But they become more multi faceted as they get older. Their interests start to intersect with my own interest. They've become interesting in ways that are more adult. I enjoy my time with them in ways that I had not anticipated. The banter, the common interests, the sharing of music and movie and t.v. shows. Camille loves Dr. Who (she's a Tannent fan girl even). She loves to debate. To crack jokes. To make observations on life. These little things do make the struggles a bit easier.

But mostly they restore my faith in how we school. Sometimes I go through huge anxieties about the way we approach education BUT moments like today make realize that I like the kids that are coming out of our family. I like the wit, the play with words, the playfulness that those simple graffiti on a cereal box represent.

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