“What’s that smell?” I asked as I exited the car. It didn’t take me long to trace it to Ace’s armpits. “Woah!” I said, “Does this mean it’s time for you to start wearing deodorant?”
It was a shock to my system, but to Ace, this is a welcome development. It’s a sign that he’s not such a kid anymore. It’s proof that what he’s been telling me for months is true; he is in fact growing up.
He wants his own cell phone. He wants to stay up later. He wants to walk himself to school/to the store. He wants to watch PG13 shows/movies.
I’ve told him multiple times that growing up does come with some privileges but it also comes with greater responsibility. This kid still loses his lunch box about every other month. He balks at feeding the cat and cleaning his room. He asks for help with tying his shoe laces and gives me a dramatic sigh and “awww, can’t you just do it?” if I ask him to put away his clothes after I’ve laundered and folded them.
Clearly he still has a long way to go before he’s really grown up but I do see him being more mature now. I do see him being more curious and asking more difficult questions and having more stimulating and thoughtful conversations. I recently had a talk with him about a school mate who he was complaining about. This school mate is on the spectrum and when I mentioned that as a possibility to him he said “Ohhh, that would make sense. That could be why sometimes he yells at me for no reason.” I think his level of awareness and understanding is wonderful. I see him handling disappointments better – Like when I told him that Jay would get out of school one week sooner than him for summer break. I see him being more independent when he wakes up before I do in the morning. I see him being more careful and helpful. I see him taking more ownership of the things he needs to do; homework, studying etc.
My baby is not a baby anymore. Thankfully he still blows me kisses when I drop him off at school – He’s not yet too cool for that; And he still likes to snuggle with me on the couch – I’m gonna hold on as long as I can; Assuming he put on his deodorant that day.