Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Lone Turtle

Wow. I just hit the "new post" button and then proceeded to sit here mesmerized by the blinking cursor in the blank text box for several minutes. So out of the habit of this anymore! Bear with me as I lurch and stumble my way through this post.

Hallo. It's springtime out there. A chilly and wavering sort of spring so far, but springtime nonetheless. And the boys' allergies are not so bad this year, and they aren't hating school right now, which is nice. We've been working so hard on that social piece for them in the last few months, and there is now a small herd of boys constantly calling and lolloping about the house. This is great for both of them...maybe not so much for me who has to clean up after the lolloping herd, but I am happy/relieved/hopeful that they won't end up painfully isolated in those fast approaching teen years.

Interesting thing about 12 year old boys though, they are as catty and gossipy as the nosiest old biddies that stereotype can conjure in the mind's eye. This came as a surprise. Being of the girl-human sort, I always figured that we were the socially dramatic ones and that the boy variety was all "cool as cucumber, let's settle our differences by wrasslin' and then hug it out and we're cool again". Not so much so. At least not at this age. The drama. O lordy, the drama.

Or maybe it's just this particular group. The kid at the hub of the social wheel is a definite drama king, the star of his own nerdy little soap opera, and I think he draws the other boys into his webs and stories. There's always a tale of tragic wrongs committed ("and then he totally griefed my minecraft server"), and vengeful acts taken ("so I spawned a bunch of creepers in his home base"), and exclusions from the herd ("so don't invite him to DnD on Wednesday, K?"). Needless to say, my two with their social metres naturally set at "blunder", are not so good at navigating all these complexities, and I've been concerned. We've had many talks about how to handle all of this gracefully, and because E&L have trouble generalizing, as each new situation comes up we keep talking and talking again.

The other day we were having yet another one of these talks in the car on the way to school. About how the Drama King was campaigning against one of the other boys in the herd, and how most of the other boys were following along, and suddenly now everyone is down on this one boy, and how is this fair?
I say, "The other boys are being a bunch of..."
"Sheep!" L finishes enthusiastically.
"Yes, exactly sheep. But you guys shouldn't be following along with what [Drama King] says, especially you E." (E is the Drama King's particular BEST FRIEND and more apt to get dragged into the drama than L)
"Yes," shouts L from the backseat in a loud, commanding voice, "You are a Mighty Turtle and can think for yourself!"

What's the opposite of a sheep? Why a mighty, independent minded turtle! I laughed, and both boys were completely annoyed with me...because he was serious, not joking, of course.

So next time you are being swayed by the vagaries of life, think ye of the mighty turtle and choose your own current to swim in.

BTW L had no idea that he was even using "sheep" in the correct context, as we found out later in the conversation. He just thinks sheep are weird...


  1. So nice to have you stop by Luna today, and even more lovely to have a new post from you. I laughed out loud and will be a might turtle today.

    Oh the drama, it is true, the surprise that boys can be catty too. I always tried to get mine to imagine what it must feel like to be the one shunned or maligned, to ask them to do the hard thing and be the friend to the one who needs it most. It has worked better with the girl than the boy. The boy found his own tribe, a very small, very tight tribe, who cycle between basketball and xbox and talk for hours on those little headset things and text non stop. It is such a relief to me that he has this group, that they are now such a bunch of nice kids, that they stay out of trouble. I hope the same for you and yours.

    Funny about the turtle, I was tumbling the other day on one of the dozens of cute tumblers out there and it was the teeny tiny turtles, even the odd 2 headed one, that I found the cutest and most interesting.

    Hope your chilly Spring heats up soon, we're wondering where that wonderful March went.

  2. You're back in the blogging saddle and I enjoy reading your posts.

    I love you for helping your boys navigate the turbulent waters of relationships! And I love this turtle and flower image as it conjures up some memories of swimming in Hawaii and makes me feel floaty, warm, and happy and on my way to summer. I was gone for three weeks and the daylight hours seem dramatically longer than when I left. I'm enjoying spring, but happy that summer is close behind.

  3. So great to have you positing again! Great to hear about the boys' lives and that all is well. Lovely. ~Karen

  4. Loved reading your story about the boys- and especially happy to hear about the turtle!- that mighty determined turtle with a mind of its own! xo

  5. This cracks me up, E. Had no idea about 12-yr old boys. V-E-R-Y interesting. I'm a few years behind you - I look forward to finding out.


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