Since my third son was born, I’ve kept a quote on my kitchen wall from the Mother’s Almanac. It reads: “There must be a special place in heaven for mothers of three sons … No other combination of children, not even twins, can create so much chaos or camaraderie.”
This Mother’s Day I’d like to thank Mother’s Almanac for all the guiding wisdom it has provided these many years. But it missed something. Specifically, a chapter on testosterone – the vast quantities of testosterone when aforementioned combination of children grows up.
Mother’s Day Eve: We decide to celebrate my upcoming day the night before. For logistical reasons - all three boys have weekend sailing training and won’t be around much during the day. And I’m fine with this – thinking that I’ll get a nice dinner out with my men and if really lucky, one that will be followed the next morning with three homemade cards. I love those. With a bit of luck, they will make coffee and muffins and maybe give me the cards along with breakfast in bed. Joy. On exceptional years my husband adds to the event with a hand written letter thanking me for being such a great mom and raising such terrific sons. This is guaranteed to put me in a fabulous mood for at least the coming year and – the man is no fool - assure him of blanket forgiveness for any and all transgressions that could possibly occur in said period. Again, all this - best-case scenario. For the moment I’m not expecting anything – just enjoying the reality – Mother’s Day Eve en famille.
We make the most of it. Dinner in a popular Thai restaurant, a family favorite. The M-men even pay lip service to all the girly topics that I fully exploit the moment to bring up. I am happy, everyone is happy.
So the conversation rolls around to the day’s events. The boys start telling us about sailing earlier. About training in St. Remo, Italy, and about the ride home in the van with their sailing coach. And how they were talking about the movie Transformers. My eldest, the teen, was in the front passenger seat. And he proffered, in his expert Siskel and Ebert opinion, that were it not for Megan Fox, the movie Transformers would be a total flop, since everything else about it was particularly bad. In his precise words: ‘the filming sucks.’
Then my teen recounts (now you just have to imagine my shock) that at this point in the conversation, my 10 year old pipes up from the back of the van. Not only was no one expecting to hear from him, no one even remembered he was there. But he made his presence known. My youngest proceeded to offer his opinion to the rest of the team – that Transformers is not all that badly filmed – at least not if you consider the fact that the cameraman only filmed it with one hand available. Only one hand.
Did you all get that? Because it sure as heck took me a second. To my utter and complete stupefaction – trying to process and run through my brain that my BABY made such a comment, he (very perceptive child) - saw my bemusement. And proceeded to illustrate with a hand gesture known to males around the world, exactly WHY the cameraman only used one hand, because the other was – how shall we put this? Busy.
There is a moment in every mother’s life when she realizes her little boys are not all that little.