Another short call.
She was tired because she’d just done “personal fitness” for physical expression. It sounded like everyone doing their own personal workout, but togetherish? There was a formula you had to follow, but you could do what you wanted? Like, so much warm up, so much stretching, so much strength, so much cardio? The idea of Sylvia working out is still a little funny to me, but I also love it. She keeps bugging me to get back into a workout routine too, which I probably need to do because I feel like a sack of crap, but…
She was really hungry and ready for dinner, which was only a few minutes away.
Her chore this week is breakfast clean-up, which she wasn’t thrilled about. She also has “kitchen all day” (or something like that) tomorrow so she misses classes and helps cook. She doesn’t sound thrilled about it. I don’t think she likes the kitchen staff very much.
THE GOOD NEWS is that they are definitely expanding through high school! We got an email and Sylvia also told me. I asked how the 9th graders felt about it and she said they seem very excited! I asked her what she thinks and she said, “I want to stay!” YAY.
I keep wondering if our daughters will just decide not to shave.
I would be so happy, honestly, if she decided not to. It’s such a pain and I hate how self-conscious I am about it. Just like me she has pale skin and very dark hair, so if I’m going to show my legs I have to shave EVERY DAY. I’d love if she could just give no fucks about it, but that doesn’t seem likely to happen at the moment. Maybe when she’s older.
Huh. Invasive observation time: I was never taught how to shave my legs, or anything else — mom just gave me a razor and I guess we both assumed it was pretty intuitive and I’d be able to figure it out. The whole idea of teaching it is so odd to me.
Yeah, I guess there’s not much to it. I was more trying to give her a time table and a little bit of ritual around starting? I don’t even know why, but I figured it meant putting it off a little longer, which seemed like a good thing? Part of me just doesn’t want her shaving for her first time so far away from me? Who knows. Being a parent seems to come with built in conflicting feelings.
Sylvia called today while I was mid-nap, so the conversation was pretty mellow.
She called me from the swings, but she had been working out. She said she worked out for about an hour by herself. She did situps and stretches and then walk/ran on the treadmill for about 20 minutes. She asked me how my running is going, and I had to admit it’s not. But she said I should run and then we could run together, which was sweet. Aaron found out she is training for a 5k because some of her friends are doing one.
She was so happy my parents came. She just genuinely had a great time with them. That makes me feel pretty great.
At one point she said with a bit of a wistful sigh, “I’m so happy here.” It’s nice to hear that after a rough few weeks.
She asked me when I started shaving my legs. I had to admit I thought it was about her age. I asked her what she is thinking about shaving and she said, “I think I have hairy legs.” I said, “Well, it depends how you feel about having hairy legs. Some people shave their legs and some people don’t. If it doesn’t bother you, you don’t need to do it.” She said she didn’t like her hairy legs. :( I told her maybe at Thanksgiving break I could show her how to do it, but then we more sensibly decided to wait until Spring Break because she’s going to be all bundled up all winter anyway. Sigh. I feel like this is the first step to all those body things girls have to deal with. At least I feel like she’s at least heard that she doesn’t have to shave if she doesn’t want to.
I realize that 90% of my tumblr is now FarmNews. Sorry that I my child is basically more interesting than I am at this point.
Maybe she doesn’t say anything because you don’t actually ask and she thinks it’s something you don’t want to discuss? I think it’s fine to say “So, what’s your experience? Or are you not there yet, which is fine.”
Yeah. I think she’s old enough now, and she’s with older kids, so I feel like it is probably the time to be more direct.
Been there. My 12 is still in the “not interested in anyone” stage. Although both she &15 both have come out to me this year. What are the odds of that? I digress. You have an awesome kid. she’ll figure out. I’d be going crazy w/ the…
This reminds me of Penny in a way.
She apparently was unhappy about her sexuality in an undefined way that she couldn’t discuss. She didn’t understand her feelings, so couldn’t discuss them.
Now she says if we had discussed transgender more along with other sex/social topics, she might have figured it out sooner. Of course we talked openly about all health and sex topics including transgender, but we didn’t spend a ton of time on transgender.
This brings me to two points:
1. You can talk about every damned thing, and still they have to figure it out despite your best efforts, and
2. I’d openly and thoroughly discuss your curiosity/concerns directly rather than beating around the bush. It’s fine for her to know it tends to be a developmental thing and you’re wondering why she isn’t discussing it. You will not pressure her by plainly asking what’s up. It will just open the topic up for discussion and she’ll know once again that you care about how she’s faring.
Of course, I’m no developmental expert, so YMMV.
This is actually really helpful, because I’ve definitely been holding back. I don’t want to plant ideas in her head that she *should* be feeling any particular way, especially since she is still so young. But I think over Thanksgiving I’ll try to find a way to bring it up specifically and ask if she has any questions and just make sure she knows that she CAN ask us questions.
Been there. My 12 is still in the “not interested in anyone” stage. Although both she &15 both have come out to me this year. What are the odds of that? I digress. You have an awesome kid. she’ll figure out. I’d be going crazy w/ the wondering too.
It’s funny. I care so little about the actual outcome of her development, I just can’t fathom that she hasn’t thought about it at all. I had a “boyfriend” in kindergarten! I mean, was that stupid? Yes. Did I get way into the idea of “boys” before I had any idea what was going on. YES. It’s probably one of the reasons Aaron and I have never really teased her or talked about her “crushes,” because I remember how LITERALLY EVERYONE AROUND ME doing that to me made certain ideas about things inevitable. I want Sylvia to base her thoughts and feelings on sexuality and relationships on her own feelings and experiences, not some outside expectation. And I think it is perfectly developmentally appropriate that she might not really be experiencing any interest in pre-sexual stuff right now (and maybe ever? I guess? Like, that’s a possibility too…) but it can be such a big part of what kids talk about at this age (especially considering that there are 14/15 year olds at the school) that I find it hard to believe she’s not getting a chance to at least hear kids talk about it. And again, I’m not invested in the outcome, I just want to know what she’s thinking about and make myself available if she does want to talk about it. It’s a lot to sort out. The school has some pretty strict rules in place about ‘relationships’ so maybe because the pressure is off to ‘fit in’ and there are so many opportunities to do things together other than sit around awkwardly pretending to know how to ‘go steady’ the kids don’t really focus on it much. I HAVE NO IDEA. Sigh. I guess someday she’ll talk to me about it.
Short call tonight!
She had a great time with my parents, yay!
She went into town and got an audiobook (Doll Bones).
I guess last weekend they went to a pumpkin festival and Sylvia said she ate:
A caramel apple
2 Deep fried Oreos
1/2 Elephant ear
For real. She is her father’s daughter. I’m barfing just thinking about it.
Then she started singing a song from Grease and I asked if they’d watched it. She jokingly said, “No, but we did watch The Lion King, which is a very romantic movie.”
So, I see my opening and go for it, “Is there a lot of romance happening at school?”
To which she enigmatically replies, “It’s a bunch of teenagers. What do you think?”
I have no good answer to that. I am asking the question because I LITERALLY have no idea how Sylvia feels about boyfriends/girlfriends/relationships in general. From my previous experience she just does not look at things through that lens yet and seemed to ignore the little that happened around her last year. So, I’ve been wondering if being around older kids she’s getting exposed to a little more of that. I don’t want to give her any ideas, I just want to feel her out, BUT SHE REFUSES TO BE BAITED.
Anyway, she mumbled something about getting teased sometimes for sitting next to a boy, but she said she just doesn’t care. I said I thought that was good. She should be friends with whoever she likes and sit by whoever she wants. “Yeah, well, usually when it starts whoever I’m sitting by just chases [insert name of specific boy] and pokes him until he stops, so…”
Uh. Ok. I don’t know. It’s so weird to be away from her right now and not know if she’s developing a little interest, maybe? Maybe not? And I don’t want to ask her too many questions about these specific kids because maybe they are just friends and I don’t want to give her the idea that if she likes a boy she has to *like* a boy. IT’S A FLIPPING MINEFIELD.
So. There’s that.